The first of the two AgustaWestland 139 helicopters for All Nippon Helicopter (ANH) has gained operational readiness for performing electronic news gathering (ENG) missions.

The medium twin-engine helicopter AW139 is fitted with a comprehensive suite of tools to operate as a real airborne live high definition TV broadcasting station.

Equipment onboard the aircraft includes a gyro-stabilised anti-vibration HDTV camera, a cabin mission console for HDTV recording, playback and live transmission, an antenna directional system for the microwave downlink transmission, and a direction finder and direction finding receiver antennas for HDTV microwave uplink transmission.

The ENG configuration also features safety technology such as weather radar, a traffic collision avoidance system, a enhanced ground proximity warning system and emergency floats.

AgustaWestland managing director Graham Cole said the company was delighted that the first ENG-configured AW139 has now entered service in Japan.

“AgustaWestland has achieved great success in the Japanese market in recent years and sees significant future business in this important market,” he said.

ANH is the All Nippon Airways Group company that operates electronic news gathering helicopters exclusively for media company Nippon Housou Kyoukai.