The MURAVES experiment aims at the muographic imaging of
the internal structure of the summit of Mt. Vesuvius,
exploiting muons produced by cosmic rays.
Though presently quiescent, the volcano carries a dramatic
hazard in its highly populated surroundings. The
challenging measurement of the rock density distribution
in its summit by muography, in conjunction with data from
other geophysical techniques, can help the modeling of
possible eruptive dynamics.
The MURAVES apparatus consists in an array of three
independent and identical muon trackers, with a total
sensitive area of 3 square meters. In each tracker, a sequence of 4
XY tracking planes made of plastic scintillators is
complemented by a 60 cm thick lead wall inserted between
the two downstream planes to improve rejection of
background from low energy muons. The apparatus is
currently acquiring data. Preliminary results from the
analysis of a first data sample will be presented.