On November 12, 1995 the Space Shuttle Atlantis carried a SoloEtte guitar to space and presented it as a gift to the Russian Cosmonauts aboard the MIR Space Station. This adventure began when Canadian Astronaut Chris Hadfield was preparing for the launch of the Space Shuttle Atlantis with NASA in Houston, TX. He was pondering an appropriate gift to present upon docking, as is a Russian tradition when visiting someone’s home. Walking through the Lockheed campus in Houston, he came upon a young engineer practicing on a SoloEtte guitar. Hadfield knew that this guitar would be perfect for his Cosmonaut guitarist friend in the MIR Space Station with whom he would soon dock during this expedition.
The durable design and headphones-ready features would be a perfect gift. He was excited to offer a gift that would help the cosmonauts and astronauts “fill the empty hours.” Hadfield then called Rossco Wright to request a guitar. NASA and Russian engineers studied and tested the SoloEtte to make sure everything was appropriate for severe space flight conditions. The astronauts presented this gift of friendship along with Sharon Isbin’s CD “American Landscapes. The SoloEtte was a welcome addition to the household and a fantastic pass-time while off-duty, sitting in the observation bay, watching the planet roll by. The SoloEtte returned to earth aboard the Space Shuttle on June 12, 1998. In those 942 days the SoloEtte traveled more than 15 thousand times around the earth and more than 376 million miles.