Foil Detection

Product Owner: Note Printing Australia


During the early Next Generation Banknotes (NGB) trials it was discovered that the BPS2000 had very limited capability for inspection of foil and IR varnish applied over a clear window. After finding that a suitable solution was not available off the shelf, we decided to start our own investigation of possible ways to examine foil and IR varnish within a clear window while maintaining our current inspection capabilities.

The concepts we developed include:
− Combining bright field and
dark field illumination, where the bright field is provided by IR LED’s
installed between existing prisms.
− Making IR LED intensity adjustable.
− Bright field illumination can be timed to occur only in the window area.
− No electrical connections to BPS2000.
− Mechanical changes are
completely reversible.

As a result, the BPS has retained its ability to out-sort scratches, scuffs and
surface defects in the varnish applied over the clear window region.

Date the innovation was first implemented


Countr(ies) where implemented



Bright field inspection capability has been achieved without impacting the normal function of the machine.

The device can be installed in a few minutes. This reduced machine downtime and allowed bright field trials to be run at short notice during development.

The device’s controller includes 10 pre-set jobs to allow for fast and easy changeover.


The device was developed at a time when there was no other viable product available. This resulted in a unique solution that closely matched our requirements.

Differentiation of new feature, product, or innovation from existing ones

By developing our own device, this has allowed us to gain full understanding and control of the various aspects of the design. This aids in troubleshooting and allows us to easily adapt the solution to new requirements.

Increased Efficiency, Safety or Environmental Protection

The implementation of the foil device has improved the feedback communication during production. Issues could be identified at a finished banknote level and notified to the presses much earlier while running the current job.

This has increased efficiency since issues could be resolved before the completion of the job based on having a reliable amount of finished banknotes to draw information from.

Awards | Technical Awards 2018


Best Currency Innovation