|Archive scenes from the launch of the Chernobyl nuclear power station, Ukraine, (then) USSR, in September 1977. The Chernobyl nuclear power plant comprised four 1000MW RBMK nuclear reactors. Only the first was operation at launch, with the rest coming online in 1978, 1981 and 1983. On 26th April 1986, reactor number 4 suffered a catastrophic core explosion during a safety test. The explosion led to an open core fire that released radioactive material into the air for nine days. A thirty-kilometre exclusion zone was established, with more than 115, 000 people evacuated. More than 50 people were killed by radiation exposure, and thousands more are thought to have died due to long-term radiation effects, such as increased incidence of cancers.