Skip to main content
 Stefano Zappalà

Stefano Zappalà

Research student, School of Computer Science and Informatics


I am a third year PhD student at COMSC.

The project I am working on has a strong interdisciplinary aspect, being based on the application of vision computing to biomehcanics, on data acquired from the neuroimaging centre in Cardiff (CUBRIC).

I gained most of my expertise during the master's thesis work that I carried on at the Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm (KTH), where I applied neuroimaging techniques on the prediction of traumatic brain injury.

In the future, I will try to continue working on this challenging research area, hopefully on various biomechanical problems.


Research interests


My research goal is to measure and investigate the mechanics underlying brain shift. It is the simple deformation of the brain tissue due to gravity. Brain shift may affect the accuracy of blind neurosurgical procedures, since it can make the planned target location differ from the real one.
This phenomenon has been now measured in-vivo with MRI images. This measures will help in the design of a finite element model simulating such deformation, to then integrate with surgical navigation software.
Different aspects influencing brain shift, like age, gender, head anatomy and fibre distribution, are under evaluation in order to investigate the mechanics causing this phenomenon.


I am part of a four PhD student project, a collaboration between the School of Computer Science and Informatics (COMSC), the School of Engineering (ENGIN) and the Cardiff University Brain Research Imaging Center (CUBRIC). Each one of us take care of different aspects of the project, for instance from the finite element modelling, to the phantom manufacturing.


16-26/07/2018: Fellowship to attend the Image-based Biomechanical Modelling summer school in Park Place, Utah (USA).
7-12/07/2018: Travel bursary to give a poster presentation at the World Congress of Biomechanics, Dublin (Ireland).
03/07/2018: Oral presentation given at the Bristol Vision Institute at University of Bristol, Bristol (United Kingdom).
16-17/11/2017: Oral presentation given at the Postgraduate Experimental Mechanics Conference at the Imperial College, London (United Kingdom).
16-20/10/2017: Attendance to the autumn school ‘Material Parameter Identification and Inverse Problems in Soft Tissue Biomechanics’ at the International Centre for Mechanical Sciences, Udine (Italy).
3-7/07/2017: Attendance to the BMVA Computer Vision summer school, Lincoln University, Lincoln (United Kingdom).
23/06/2017: Poster presentation given at the Vision Researchers’ Colloquium at University of Bath, Bath (United Kingdom).