The He 115 was developed as a torpedo-bomber, mine-laying and
reconnaissance aircraft, during the mid-thirties by the Ernst Heinkel
A.G. The two-engined all-metal mid-wing twin-floatplane possessed
exceptional water handling qualities, good stability and an
The He 115 V1 (D-AEHF) powered by two 960 hp BMW 132K nine-cylinder
radials made the first flight in 1936. The second prototype He 115 V2
(D-APDS), with a slightly revised nose, flew also in 1936, as did the
third prototype He 115 V3 (D-ABZV) with an entirely revised nose and
having a glasshouse cockpit. The fourth prototype He 115 V4 (D-AHME)
was the production prototype, having the bracing wires replaced by
Ten He 115 A-Os were built in 1937 as a pre-production series
with a MG 15 machine gun for the observer, followed by the He 115 A-1
production model, differing only in having an additional MG 15 in the
nose. This model was exported as the He 115 A-2 to Norway (6) and
Sweden (10) in 1939. Norways number increased in 1940 when two
German He 115 B-1 models were captured. Later one He 115 A-2 fled to
Finland; three He 115 A-2 and one He 115 B-1 reached Scotland,
receiving the British s/ns BV184 to BV187. Two eventually
saw action in British service when used in clandestine missions; the
latest to retire was scrapped in 1943.
The sole example of the He 115 D was a conversion of a He 115 A-1,
incorporating two 1,600 hp BMW801C radials, a crew of four and able
to reach a top speed of 248 mph (399 kmh); it was employed
operationally in 1941.
By 1940 seventy-six aircraft were built in several versions, and
other versions proposed, but landplanes had production priority.
However, the demand for floatplanes increased and late 1943
production was restarted with the He 115 E with 141 of this model
delivered in 1944.