One would assume that you would want it in front of the ship. As is the case with the "USS. Enterprise NX-01" Also why is there only a front facing deflector, when the ship can travel along several different axis.
The dreadnought USS Federation "also" has a rear-facing deflector dish(!) 'In the diagram the notation on the "main sensor dish F/A" the notation (F/A)=(Fore, & Aft); on the Star Trek USS. Enterprise Original Blueprints it reads "main sensor and navigational deflector" I have always wondered about that; is there an actual explanation for this?
For example; in the TOS episode "Balance of Terror" the Enterprise goes to "full reverse", or in the Wrath of Khan when the Enterprise goes straight up and then back down again. What protects the ship during these maneuvers?
Because the shield are not always on??? right? or am I confusing deflectors, & shields?
Funny thing well for everyone but me. I have the technical manual, I do not remember seeing that in there.