Tera Computer Co, seen as one of the last bastions of the supercomputer age, has now officially passed out of its extended development stage – started at its inception in 1987 – and moved into early production of its MTA Multithreaded Architecture system. The Seattle, Washington-based company has secured a further $4.1m through two private placements to provide working capital for building inventory and expanding its operations, following an $8m private placement in July of last year. The first of the new placements raised $1.1m through the sale of 299,332 shares of Common Stock and 74,833 warrants. The second raised $3m through the sale of 3,000 shares of Series A Preferred Stock to a single, unnamed purchaser. The company recently made its first MTA sale to the University of California, San Diego’s San Diego Supercomputer Center for $4m and is hoping to make sales from extensions to the system over time. There are no other deals signed as yet, but co-founder Jim Rottsolk said there are a number of potential customers in other government agencies in the US and abroad, in energy, defense and space. He also said commercial firms in the automotive industry, petroleum, aerospace and entertainment have expressed an interest in the system. Tera recently claimed a record for the fastest single processor performance ever, while running the NASA NAS Parallel Integer Sort benchmark, which ran in 1.9 seconds. The previous record holder, a Cray – now Silicon Graphics – T90, took 2.02 seconds on the same task, 10% slower. Tera’s losses for the year to December 31 1996 were at $12.1m on zero revenue, up from $5.5m in the previous period.