Hurricane Katrina (12L) off Florida
Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Rapid Response Team, NASA/GSFC
Hurricane Katrina had just re-emerged over the Gulf of Mexico after its first United States landfall over Florida on August 26, 2005, when the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite acquired this image. Katrina was a tropical storm after it cut across southern Florida, but regained hurricane status within an hour of reaching open water. The storm had been over the water for nearly fourteen hours when this image was taken at 1:45 p.m. U.S. Central time, and had already assumed the tight swirling shape of a growing hurricane. Within hours of this image, Katrina would grow into a Category 3 storm. When it came ashore on August 29, it became one of the deadliest and costliest storms to hit the United States.