Experimentation and Validation

Crane House Notes


A house note is an important tool for a central bank’s systematic evaluation and testing of new materials and design integration of security features. It can also clear the way for use in production and circulation should the need arise.

For two decades, we have done just that at Crane Currency. We have used our internal skills, explored new technologies and educated central banks on matters of design and technology by producing house notes, averaging the creation of a new house note every year. 

There is no industry definition of house note. However, Crane regards them as needing to be produced in accordance with and meeting the durability and production requirements of actual banknotes.  

“The Crane Design Team sees house notes as an excellent means to experiment with and learn about new features. They are not simply tools to advertise new features. The designer can take many liberties in creating house notes, but they must demonstrate the functionality and economy of banknotes”, said Sara Trygg-Rudberg, Head of Banknote Design, Crane Currency. 

Featuring RAPID® Vision

The ‘Intelligent Evolution’ House Note

The Intelligent Evolution note with RAPID Vision leverages breakthrough innovations in micro-optics to achieve fully synchronized multicolor movement. This results in new effects that are attractive and easy to verify in spite of the thread’s increased technical complexity.

The theme of the note is adaptation, which centers on a giant Pacific octopus. Modern, customizable security features increase security by making intuitive connections to a banknote’s theme. In this case, the note’s designers created a multicolor RAPID Vision security thread evocative of the octopus’ ability to change color and texture.

The new multicolor feature represents a step-change advancement in security for banknotes, raising the bar even higher for would-be counterfeiters.


  • Micro-optic windowed security thread, 4 – 6 mm wide  
  • High-speed moving color effects that are bold and beautiful  
  • Real time synchronization of color and movement; never before seen  
  • Fully customizable color, movement and graphic combinations  
  • Like RAPID® HD, RAPID Vision is highly durable and virtually impervious to soiling
  • RAPID Vision Detect provides high security machine-readability
  • RAPID Vision can be overvarnished




At the beginning of May 2022, Crane Currency unveiled that MOTION SURFACE would now be available for all banknote substrates, including polymer.

With the number of security features for polymer banknotes being limited, the Pinball note was developed to fix security weaknesses before counterfeiters can learn to exploit them. Printing white ink on plastic is becoming easier and highly deceptive diffractive and iridescent features can be obtained via social media.


With MOTION SURFACE on polymer, all banknotes can be secured with customized visual effects that quickly communicate authenticity and make public instruction easier.

The Pinball Note was designed to improve public education using gamification. Strong three-dimensional effects promote interaction and curiosity, while high-speed movement rewards the public for looking precisely at the banknote’s most secure effects. Simply, gamification helps to make the challenge of banknote validation easy and fun.

The Pinball Note uses a 12 mm wide MOTION SURFACE® micro-optic stripe designed to secure polymer banknotes.



Celebrating Modern Banknote Printing

The Malta House Note was the second house note produced by Crane Currency to feature its micro-optic feature MOTION SURFACE®. From the most modern banknote printing works in the industry, and having the industry’s first micro-optic stripe, the Malta House Note speaks to the global appeal of experience and expertise, cutting-edge technology, and aesthetics.

Deep, Shimmer and Topo

Its principal public security feature, the 10mm wide MOTION SURFACE stripe, has the visual effects Deep, Shimmer and Topo – the latter being the subject of a research study conducted by Birmingham University that showed it enables the general public to detect counterfeits reliably with just a glance.



The Bug Note was designed to introduce another industry first, a machine-readable RAPID® micro-optic security thread which includes an invisible near IR-absorbing material that produces unique responses at different wavelengths. It is easily interrogated with sensors that today exist in most banknote equipment, from those used at POS to the high-speed processing equipment employed by central banks.

Visible and invisible features

The theme of bugs provided spectacular subjects that included naturally occurring phenomena involving iridescence, ultraviolet and even near infrared wavelengths, i.e., those that we humans cannot see but can be displayed and/or detected by many types of insects. The Bug Note’s combination of visible and invisible features makes it a study of functionality effectively balancing and integrating security features for both the public and machines.

Full Crane Micro-optics


The World in Motion note was the Crane Design Team’s submission to the World Banknote Project sponsored by the International Banknote Designers Association. Crane’s goal was twofold: to stimulate thinking, and to show off the diversity of talent and skills resident within its team.

A Full movement banknote

Crane embraced the idea that its theme would be truly worldwide selecting global climate change from a shortlist of ideas generated by the team.

Leveraging the micro-optic technology behind the security features MOTION®, RAPID® and MOTION SURFACE®, the Crane Design Team created a fully micro-optic banknote integrating all three technologies. The front of banknote features the South Pole. The team brought depth to the flat space of the banknote with Topo effects that bulge out from the note surface with an apex of up to 10mm above the note. In the plane of the banknote itself, there is a micro-optic-propelled compass effect integrated with offset and intaglio printing. Tilting the note towards and away from you ‘blows’ snow from side-to-side; and tilting the note left and right sends the snowflakes rotating in place.

Color and contrast effects

On the reverse of the note, the North Pole provides storytelling with movement. The Topo feature and compass effect tie themes on the front of the note to the back. Topo bubbles are rendered in a different colour from their surrounding micro-optic effects. This heightens contrast and enforces the separation of their above-the-surface feeling from the dynamic Deep water molecule icons below.

"The Crane Design Team sees house notes as an excellent means to experiment with and learn about new features."

Sara Trygg-Rudberg

Head of Banknote Design, Crane Currency

3D Movement on Flat Surfaces

Crane micro-optics

Learn more about security solutions with different effects, features and specifications.

Banknote design

Meet the designers

New design or security upgrade? Meet the experts of banknote design.