They say that money talks, and that’s certainly true in a figurative sense, but sometimes it can have a genuinely interesting story to tell as well. That’s the case with the ninth series of Swiss banknotes, from which the 200 franc note goes into circulation on 22 August 2018.
The new Swiss 200 franc note is particularly valuable not only because of its monetary value, but also because it is inspired by science, and in particular the science of matter: particle physics.
Each note in the ninth series of Swiss bank notes has been designed to tell a story about one aspect of the world, seen from a Swiss angle of course. The first of the new series that was released, the 50 franc note, tells a story of the wind, how it circulates around the globe, spreads the seeds of wild flowers, and allows the intrepid to enjoy the Swiss Alps from a vantage point beneath the canopy of a paraglider riding currents of mountain air. The 20 franc note is all about light, while the 10 tells a story about time. These were the first three notes released, and they will soon be joined by the 200 franc note, whose story is all about matter.
The Swiss National Bank keeps the identity of each note a closely guarded secret until the note is released, but the core design elements have been visible for all to see on the SNB website since the first note was issued on 6 April 2016. Each note features a hand, a globe, a location in Switzerland and an object. The location and the object for the 200 franc note are not hard to identify as representing CERN and the transformation of energy and matter in the LHC. It’s an honour for CERN to have been chosen to represent one of the nation’s most clearly identifiable assets, and I look forward to exploring the new note in all its intricacy. I hope you will too, but remember to spend it wisely!