NASA releases breathtaking before and after images of Hurricane Irma

Carrie Healey,

Hurricane Irma's Category 5 winds whipped through the Caribbean islands at upwards of 185 mph, destroying almost everything in its path.

The powerful storm stripped some islands of all vegetation, leaving the usually green landscape brown. According to NASA, the brown satellite images may mean Irma ripped up most of the vegetation. The space agency also noted that "salt spray whipped up by the hurricane can coat and desiccate leaves while they are still on the trees."

The September 6 hurricane passed over the northernmost Virgin Islands. 

The following images were captured by theOperational Land Imager on theLandsat 8satellite. The photos were taken before the storm on August 25 and after the storm on September 10.