Due to its performance and handling characteristics, the MiG-29 clearly needed a two-seat conversion trainer variant. The extra weight of the second cockpit and the reduction of internal fuel tankage made it operationally limited, so the N-019 radar was deleted. Instead, the MiG-29UB (OKB designation 9-51) trainer has a sophisticated weapon system and emergencies simulator, allowing the instructor to generate appropriate HUD and radar scope symbology in the front cockpit.
To minimize drag, the rear seat is not raised significantly. It was felt that an unobstructed view forward for the instructor was not a priority, with a small retractable periscope making up the deficiency.
The relatively low ratio of two-seat trainers delivered can be explained by the ease of conversion to the MiG-29 from other Soviet Bloc fighters, and by the practice of converting aircrew from customer nations in the Soviet Unit itself. Most operators have a few two-seat aircraft, usually assigned to front-line units.
Mikoyan MiG-29UB 'Fulcrum-B'
generally similar to the Mikoyan MiG-29 'Fulcrum-A' except in the following
Fuselage and tail: length 17,42 m (57 ft 2 in)
A MiG-29UB 'Fulcrum-B' trainer wearing East German markings takes off from its Preschen base.