From Fit to Unfit: How Banknotes become Soiled

DNB Betalingsverkeer
Date 1 July 2011

A banknote is a product with a long tradition. It is well known and commonly used. Yet banknotes still have an unreveiled secrecy, not meaning their security features, but their life! Especially the link between their environment and deterioration remains somewhat a mystery. Four typical deterioration stages of a banknote in circulation in the Netherlands are described in this paper. The study elaborates on earlier work conducted by DNB in the field of banknote soiling.