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Space robots land on Canadian currency

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canadian money (bank of canada)
canadian money (bank of canada)

Canadian robot money is on the horizon. A new $5 note coming in November will feature famous Canadian-made space robots Canadarm2 and Dextre alongside a spacewalking astronaut. The bill is the latest in Canada’s switch from cotton to longer-lasting, recyclable polymer for its national currency, and was fittingly unveiled aboard the International Space Station by Canadian astronaut, musician, and zero-gravity physics instructor Chris Hadfield. The new bill “highlights Canada’s technological achievements that look skyward — our contributions to the international space program,” said Bank of Canada governor Mark Carney.

The news comes as The Royal Canadian Mint pushes ahead with work on its “MintChip” prototype, a digital currency designed for transactions under $10, requiring no online banking services, and backed by the government of Canada. The project first surfaced in 2012, but The Toronto Star writes that the Mint has hired a new product manager, and is listening to developer feedback and talking to both the financial sector and Finance Department to determine how to move forward with the project.