This answer here mentions the STS-94's ability to gimbal up to 20 degrees in all directions, that got me thinking, what exactly is the maximum ever feasibly implemented? I've seen a lot of information on different forums mentioning numbers below 20 degrees. I was hoping for something like this comparison of all engines:


But with the gimbal range for all engines also included, or at the very minimum a guess at the highest gimbal range ever used in a production rocket.

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    $\begingroup$ Of possible interest: non-gimbaling TVC: space.stackexchange.com/questions/25442/… $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 17, 2018 at 20:40
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    $\begingroup$ 20 degrees is certainly the highest range of gimbaling I know of, but it’s not a figure that’s frequently provided alongside other engine specs. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 17, 2018 at 21:10
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    $\begingroup$ @RussellBorogove so basically the one I listed was the highest? I thought 20 degrees sounded very high in comparison to the average 6 degrees or 11 degrees I found quoted on most craft. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 17, 2018 at 21:13
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    $\begingroup$ Incidentally, STS-94 (or STS-xx in general) is a mission identifier, referring to a single flight, not the name of the launcher. The design of the complete stack is “STS” or informally “space shuttle”; the spaceplane without boosters and external tank is “STS orbiter” or “space shuttle orbiter”. The individual orbiter airframes can be identified by name or as OV-10x numbers. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 17, 2018 at 21:14
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    $\begingroup$ I can’t rule out that larger gimbal ranges have been used on something like guided missiles (though those generally use fins for maneuvering), and while my knowledge of launchers is broad, it’s not encyclopedic, so I am reluctant to answer. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 17, 2018 at 21:17

1 Answer 1


This is not an exhaustive list, feel free to add to it.

RS-25 - (SLS, Shuttle)


Merlin - Falcon 9


Shuttle SRBs

RS-68 - SLS, Delta IV

F1 - Saturn V


HM7-B - Ariane 5 upper stage

NERVA - concept

Long March



(although the RD-00110R Vernier thrusters have 45°)

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    $\begingroup$ "yes" haha, I take that to mean they can't do it very well? "Two are fixed and two can gimbal in two axis." $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 18, 2018 at 11:33
  • $\begingroup$ Is "TS-25" a typo for RS-25, aka SSME? $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 18, 2018 at 13:14
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    $\begingroup$ I think vernier thrusters would be an applicable, valid sub-class of the engines. $\endgroup$
    – SF.
    Commented Oct 18, 2018 at 21:54
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    $\begingroup$ @OrganicMarble You are correct. Answer has been amended. $\endgroup$
    – Coomie
    Commented Oct 22, 2018 at 3:21
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    $\begingroup$ Energia core engines gimbal up to 7° according to me in a comment without citation on another QA - finding a reference is left as an exercise. 😉 $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 22, 2018 at 4:57

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