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The Reserve Bank Museum MONIAC

The Real MONIAC

The Reserve Bank Museum MONIAC hydraulic computer is as unusual as it is unique. It is the only one known to be still operational in the Southern Hemisphere.

The MONIAC on display in the Reserve Bank Museum is one of 14 built. It was originally owned by the London School of Economics and calibrated to represent the British economy. A second MONIAC, linked to the first, reproduced the “rest of the world”.

In 1990, the MONIAC was brought to New Zealand by the New Zealand Institute of Economic Research and refurbished as a sesquicentennial project, including re-calibration to the New Zealand economy. The old pound sterling signs can still be seen on the machine.

It was lent to the Reserve Bank Museum in 2006 and further refurbishment work undertaken, including replacing plumbing and pumps that had corroded. This was a significant project involving expertise from both within the Bank and Victoria University of Wellington. Leakage was always a risk, and the display cabinet in which it was installed was especially built with drainage and drip-tray.


Visit the Real MONIAC

The real MONIAC is one of the most popular exhibits in the Reserve Bank Museum and remains an impressive demonstration of engineering and economic expertise.

Moniac demonstrations are held on the first Wednesday of the month between 12.15 and 12.45pm.

 

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