Institute of Dentistry

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Dr Lifong Zou, BSc, MSc, PhD


Clinical Scientist

Telephone: +44 20 7882 8624 / 8622
Room Number: Institute of Dentistry


Lifong became a Clinical Scientist registered by HPC after being awarded her PhD on the optical measurement of free form surfaces and becoming involved with the facial laser scanning of patients. Working in an interdisciplinary environment at the Clinical Dental Biometrics Laboratory (CDBL), together with clinicians and postgraduate students, she has conducted numerous clinically-related research projects with many of them resulting in published work. As a result of this success in research, the CDBL has expanded its activities and equipment. To date, it comprises six sets of 3-D free-form surface measurement systems, mostly company-funded.  These include contact (stylus) and non-contact (laser) data-capturing devices, that can directly scan living human parts, such as faces, as well as components of human prostheses, such as acetabular cups and femur heads for hip replacements, denture copies, dental study models and dental impressions.

Lifong graduated in the subject of Computer Aided Design and Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAD/CAM) with a Bachelor Degree of Science from Beijing University. In the mid-1980s, early in her career, she used one of the first 3-D CAD/CAM software programmes called CATIA (Computer Aided Three-dimensional  Interactive Application, Dassault System) for designing the outline of aircrafts and simulating undercarriage tests. With this expertise she came to England, to be employed by the British Aerospace (BAe) in Hatfield, UK. Lifong has always been interested in medicine and dentistry and started to apply CAD/CAM knowledge to computer aided metrology in dentistry in 1990 in the Biometrics Lab of the Institute of Denistry. Her career, however diverse it may seem, has one thing in common – the application of the measurement of free-form surfaces. The following three pictures are samples that demonstrate few aspects in life surface measurements and image analysis.


Research Interests:

In vivo 3-D surface capturing,  3-D image analysis and measurements using coordinate metrology. The 3-D  surface measurement applications range  from facial scans to CBCT images.  Few samples show below demonstrate  changes after clinical interventions,  that can be objectively quantified in liner, area, volumechanges at specified locations of interests.

Funding Awards

2010: Awarded £18,518 as principle investigator from GSK Aquafresh for the project of validation of the LAVA COS digital impression system.

Selected Publications:

PhD Supervision

PhD students 2013-2016 – XiaoLi Chen study in the measurement of alveolar bone changes in relation to the  implant treatments

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