Roughly an hour before this image was captured at 1:50 p.m. Central Daylight Time on September 10, 2008, Ike was a Category 2 hurricane according to the National Hurricane Center. Ike was a large storm, and at the time of this image it was affecting three nations: Cuba, the United States, and Mexico.
Ike was a Category 4 storm before its passage over Cuba stripped it of some of its power. It re-emerged in the Gulf of Mexico as a Category 1 storm and re-strengthened. As of September 11, forecasters were warning that Ike might reach Category 3 strength in the warm waters of the Gulf prior to its projected landfall on the central Texas coastline.
NASA image created by Jesse Allen, using data provided courtesy of the MODIS Rapid Response team. Caption by Rebecca Lindsey.