Light scalar particles with couplings of sub-gravitational strength, which can generically be called 'dilatons', can produce violations of the equivalence principle. However, in order to understand experimental sensitivities one must know the coupling of these scalars to atomic systems. We report here on a study of the required couplings. We give a general Lagrangian with five independent dilaton parameters and calculate the 'dilaton charge' of atomic systems for each of these. Two combinations are particularly important. One is due to the variations in the nuclear binding energy, with a sensitivity scaling with the atomic number as A−1/3. The other is due to electromagnetism. We compare limits on the dilaton parameters from existing experiments.
CLASSICAL AND QUANTUM GRAVITY