Hurricane Ike was bumping across Cuba on September 9, 2008, when the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite captured this image. Ike hit the eastern part of the island as a Category 3 storm and weakened to a Category 1 storm as it spent its energy through wind and rainfall over the island. In the image, the eye of the storm was over the western part of the island, and the outer bands of rain clouds reached Florida in the north and the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico in the west. Hurricane Ike (/aɪk/) was a powerful tropical cyclone that swept through portions of the Greater Antilles and Northern America in September 2008, wreaking havoc on infrastructure and agriculture, particularly in Cuba and Texas. The ninth tropical storm, fifth hurricane, and third major hurricane of the 2008 Atlantic hurricane season, Ike developed from a tropical wave west of Cape Verde on September 1[nb 1] and strengthened to a peak intensity as a Category 4 hurricane over the open waters of the central Atlantic on September 4 as it tracked westward. Several fluctuations in strength occurred before Ike made landfall on eastern Cuba on September 8. The hurricane weakened prior to continuing into the Gulf of Mexico, but increased its intensity by the time of its final landfall on Galveston, Texas on September 13, before becoming an extratropical storm on September 14. The remnants of Ike continued to track across the United States and into Canada, causing considerable damage inland, before dissipating on the next day
Credit: NASA image created by Jesse Allen, using data provided courtesy of the MODIS Rapid Response team. Caption by Rebecca Lindsey.