Kishiro Matsuo's design
team created both the E12A and the E13A, the latter being merely a
larger and more powerful version of the former. The first E13A was
completed in late 1938 add powered by a 1,080 hp (805 kW) Mitsubishi
Kinsei 43 14-cylinder air-cooled radial (which was retained throughout
the life of the type). During manufacturer's test flights, it became
plain that the E13A was superior to the smaller E12A. Not withstanding
its larger size and heavier weight, it was much more stable and
manoeuvrable, and also had far better performance. By this time, the
Navy had decided they wanted a three-seat aircraft and not a
two-seater, so development of the two-seat E12A and E12N was halted.
Service test pilots flew the prototype E13A in competition against two
prototype E13Ks built by Kawanishi. In December 1940, the E13A was
formally declared the winner and was accepted for production as the
Navy Type 0 Reconnaissance Seaplane Model 11, or E13A1 Model 11.
Aichi built 133 E13A1s
through early 1942, when they were ordered to concentrate on building
the Yokosuka-designed D4Y carrier dive bomber and recon plane. At that
time, primary builder of the E13A became the Watanabe Tekkosho
(Watanabe Ironworks Company Limited) which in 1943 was re-organized as
Kyushu Hikoki KK (Kyushu Airplane Company Limited). Total aircraft
production was 1,418 aircraft. Aichi Tokei Denki KK building 133
aircraft from 1939-42, Watanabe/Kyushu building 1,237 aircraft from
1942-45 and Dai-Juichi Kaigun Kokusho (11th Naval Air Arsenal) building
48 aircraft from 1940-42.
The Aichi E13A1 made
its combat debut over China in the autumn of 1941. Operating from the
catapults of cruisers and seaplane tenders, aircraft of this type made
air attacks on the Canton-Hankow Railroad, and also flew anti-shipping
patrols along the China coast. Its next combat sorties were flown over
Hawaii, launched from the cruisers Tone, Chikuma, and Kinugasa.
Aichi E13A1s flew reconnaissance over the area of Pearl Harbour shortly
before the attack, pinpointing the positions of the American ships in
the harbour and noting that all was quiet, and the Americans were not
on alert. From then on, E13A1s were committed wherever the Japanese
Navy was operating. Flying from either ships or shore bases, as
required, the E13A1 was quite successful as long as Allied fighter
opposition was limited, despite its poor fuel and crew protection and
its pitiful defensive armament (a single 7.7 mm (0.303 in) machine gun
in the rear cockpit). It could carry either one 551 lbs (250 kg) bomb
under the fuselage between the floats, or four wing-mounted 132 lbs (60
kg) bombs or depth charges. Its maximum endurance was almost fifteen
hours, giving it a useful range for patrol and reconnaissance missions.
In addition to limited bombing strikes and long-range patrol sorties,
the "Jake" as she was code-named, also was used for staff transport,
air-sea rescue, anti-shipping attack, and, later in the war Kamikaze
For nearly four years,
the Jake was built without any changes from the original prototype. In
November 1944, two new subtypes were introduced, differing externally
from the regular E13A1 only by the additions of a propeller spinner for
the three-bladed propeller, and two extra pairs of inward-sloping
bracing struts for the twin underwing floats. The E13A1a Model 11A
received improved radio equipment, while the E13A1b Model 11B was
fitted with an air-to-surface search radar, with antennae protruding
from the fuselage sides and from the wing leading edges. Either of
these versions could be fitted with exhaust flame dampers for night
operations, and for anti-shipping attack (usually against surfaced
submarines or PT boats), a single flexible Type 99 20 mm cannon, firing
downwards and forwards from the fuselage belly, could be mounted, as
well. Some Jakes were also fitted with an aerial magnetic submarine
detection device, called Jikitanchiki, which required the
aircraft to fly at a very low 30-40 ft (9-12 m) above the sea's surface
to get any decent results.
Due to the theatre the
Japanese operated in and the vast expanses of ocean it encompassed,
long range seaplanes were crucial to the Japanese war effort. The Aichi
E13A served from Pearl harbour to some of the last Kamikaze
attacks of the war. Although easy fodder for Allied fighters the Aichi
E13A and its crews performed their missions well throughout the Pacific
Aichi E13A1a Model 11A
- Introduced in late 1944 this type featured two extra pairs of
inward-sloping bracing struts for the twin underwing floats, a
propeller spinner and more advance radio equipment.
Aichi E13A1b Model 11B
- Based on the Aichi E13A1a Model 11A but fitted with ASV radar with
antennae protruding from the fuselage sides and from the wing leading
edges and usually equipped with the Type 99 20 mm cannon. Either of
these versions could be fitted with exhaust flame dampers for night
operations against allied shipping.
(Navy Type 0
Reconnaissance Seaplane Model 11 - Aichi E13A1)
Type: Three Seat
Long Range Reconnaissance Floatplane
Tokei Denki Kabushiki Kaisha Design Team led by Kishiro Matsuo
Aichi Tokei Denki KK in Funakata (133 aircraft from 1938-1942) then
Watanabe Tekkosho (Watanabe Ironworks Company Limited) in Zasshonokuma
later re-organized in 1943 as Kyushu Hikoki KK (Kyushu Airplane Company
Limited) (1,237 aircraft from 1942-1945) and Dai-Juichi Kaigun Kokusho
(11th Naval Air Arsenal) at Hiro (48 aircraft from 1940-1942).
Mitsubishi Kinsei 43 14-cylinder air-cooled twin-row radial engine
rated for 1,080 hp (805 kW) at 6,560 ft (2000 m) and 1,060 hp (790 kW)
Maximum level speed 233 mph (375 km/h) at 7,150 ft (2180 m); cruising
speed 137 mph (220 km/h) at 6,560 ft (2000 m); service ceiling 28,640
ft (8730 m); climb to 9,845 ft (3000 m) in 6 minutes 5 seconds.
miles (2090 km) on internal fuel.
5,825 lbs (2642 kg) with a maximum take-off weight of 8,025 lbs (3640
47 ft 6 3/4 in (14.50 m); length 37 ft 0 3/4 in (11.30 m); height 15 ft
8 1/2 in (4.78 m); wing area 387.51 sq ft (36.00 sq m); wing loading
20.7 lbs/sq ft (101.1 kg/sq m); power loading 7.6 lbs/hp (3.4 kg/hp).
7.7 mm (0.303 in) Type 92 machine-gun on flexible mount in aft
position, plus up to 551 lbs (250 kg) of bombs. A Type 99 20 mm cannon
could be mounted on a ventral flexible mount for anti-shipping strikes.
(prototype), E13A1 Model 11, E13A1a Model 11A (improved bracing and a
more advanced radio), E13A1b Model 11B (ASV radar).
(E13A1b Model 11B) ASV radar. Some Jakes were also fitted with an
aerial magnetic submarine detection device, called Jikitanchiki.
flight late 1938; entered service (navy) late 1941; production (E13A1a)
(Imperial Japanese Navy)
Tenders - Chitose, Chiyoda, Kimikawa Maru. Battleship - Haruna.
Cruisers - Kinugasa, Atago, Takao, Chokai, Maya, Kumano, Chikuma, Tone,
Suzuya, etc. Kokutais - 5th, 7th, 19th, 21st, 36th, 40th, 901st, 932nd,
955th, Chichijima and Sasebo.