; Liu, Feng] Hua Zhong Normal Univ, Inst Particle Phys, Wuhan 430079, Peoples R China
; [Xu, Xinping] Chinese Acad Sci, Inst High Energy Phys, Beijing 100049, Peoples R China
The standard model of particle physics predicts a complex structure of decay modes for hadrons, which opens up an avenue for observing the internal forces governing the decay dynamics. In this paper, we present the decay modes of hadrons as a network in which the nodes are particles and directed links are pointing from the mother particles to daughter particles. Using the database of decay modes collected from the Particle Data Group, we try to unveil the topological structure and possible intrinsic nature of hadron decays in the light of recent investigations of complex networks. We study distributions of the numbers of daughter and mother particles, and explore scaling laws that may govern the underlying decay structure of the system. We find that it is a small-world network with symmetrical structure. We also study the influence of constraints arising from conservation laws on the network structure, and our analysis suggests that the constraints of conservations of momentum-energy, charge, lepton number and baryon number play important roles in the topology of the decay network. Finally, we classify the hadrons into communities according to their quark component, and uncover the relationship between the particle roles and connection patterns in the communities.