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Astronaut Chris Hadfield poses for a photo with a new polymer $5 bank note on Tuesday, April 30, 2013.Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press

The Bank of Canada launched its new bank notes from outer space as Commander Chris Hadfield revealed a new astronaut-themed five dollar bill that he had been keeping under wraps for months. (Check out images of the new bills)

The first-ever Canadian Commander of the International Space Station started his current mission more than four months ago. But when Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney and Finance Minister Jim Flaherty reached him by satellite Tuesday from a news conference in Ottawa, the astronaut had one of the new bills ready to flip around in a state of zero gravity.

The new $5 note features the Canadarm2 and an astronaut meant to represent all Canadians who have contributed to the space program.

"These new polymer notes show us the kinds of things we can accomplish when we really put our minds to it," he said. "It really marks Canada's contribution to the International Space Station program and especially to our long-time expertise in robotics."

The Bank also introduced a new $10 note, which highlights the linking of eastern and western Canada by rail. Both new bills will enter circulation later this year.

The two new notes continue the bank's rollout of polymer-based bank notes, joining previously-released $20, $50 and $100 notes.

Mr. Carney and Mr. Flaherty said the new polymer notes – which replace paper bills – have already proven effective at preventing fraud.

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