You are not stranded. But they are not far away. The three astronauts aboard the International Space Station watched an aid crew drop off their failed launcher last week. Suddenly, the suspicious hole in her escape ship looks even more ominous.
The German ISS commander Alexander Gerst together with the Russian Sergey Prokopyev and the American Serena Aunon-Chancellor should return to Earth in December
Now you are not so sure.
However, NASA is trying to be optimistic.
"I talked to the crew … they are fine," Deputy Astronaut chief Reid Wiseman said late in the week. "Everyone is in a good mood, they are ready to serve the will of the program and they will stay up there as long as we need them."
How long that will take is unknown.
The problem is … in the air.
You have enough food and air supplies for a few more months.
And there are two US and one Japanese cargo transport module on the verge of being put into orbit.
The problem is the availability or lack of a capsule that can carry them back to the atmosphere.
The Russian Soyuz rocket program was launched set after a "serious anomaly" caused the two astronauts to fire emergency services to the ISS
both safely made it back to Earth. But those who are already up there may have to wait for another ride to get approved.
"We need to see where the data lead them," said Kenny Todd, integration manager of ISS Mission Operations. "And if that's a month, or if it's two months or six, I really can not speculate."
But NASA and Roscosmos are also worried about the condition of the Soyuz module, which is currently being sent to the space station as "lifeboats".
There is a usage date that expires in January. Its components are only rated for a 200-day stay in space. After that, seals and soft components could be destroyed.
But there is another, small problem.
In the skin of the orbital component of the Soyuz MS-09, a 2 mm hole was drilled in the capsule earlier this year.
An amateur attempt had been made to clog it up ̵
A search of the crew found the hole.
It was fast
But the allegations continue, with Russia going so far as to suspect that one of the NASA astronauts might have sabotaged the ship.
Speculations aside, the exact extent of the drill's damage to the attached Soyuz has not been determined by a spacewalk. Has it pierced or cracked the vital heat shield of the adjacent landing module?
Even a tiny imperfection could be a matter of life and death for the beings inside the Soyuz when it blows back into the atmosphere as a superheated fireball.
If NASA and Roscosmos are not sure if the Soyuz capsule is safe, it could be ejected from the station to their docking port release.
Another capsule needs to be prepared and started.
But it would take at least 200 days before this could happen – possibly longer considering the recent failure of the launch.
The Soyuz program is in trouble. There were two recent teething problems that raised questions about lowering quality control standards.
"The vehicle that will set up a replacement team is moving through its normal development process," says Todd. "Our Russian colleagues would decide how best to handle this situation, and that is still TBD (to be determined)"
NASA has already suggested they would prefer to keep the crew on the station – even without a reliable "lifeboat".
But it only has a partial say.
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The United States has not been able to retract or recover orbit people since the last Shuttle Shuttle service in July 2011. And the private companies – like SpaceX and Boeing, who are supposed to build new manned modules – are lagging behind schedule.
So it has to rely on the Russians.
The only other nation that can put people into space is China. And the US refuses to cooperate with its space agency.
Ironically, with the founding of the Soyuz fleet, China is the only nation to have an operational manned space program. And his docking system is compatible with the ISS.
When the three astronauts try to re-enter a suspected Soyuz, the ISS itself finds itself empty for the first time in 18 years.
NASA says there are steps to remotely control the station from the ground.
But many of the experiments would have to be abandoned. Two space walks planned for this month have already been postponed indefinitely.
"We are always prepared for that," Todd said. "I am very confident that we can fly for a longer time."
"When the pumps do their job and all the other systems – the solar panels continue to rotate and we keep the batteries charged – there is nothing that means we can not just drill holes in the sky and make minimal command."  But if something goes wrong – and it does normally – the space station could be in danger. The $ 150 billion project could start orbiting and turning towards the ground.
However, Todd remained optimistic: "We can tolerate some failures, some significant failures, and continue to operate the station in a crew manner."