# How many decay channels are there for the W and Z bosons?

After searching through quite some material from e.g. the PDG and CERN themselves, I still have a question regarding the decay channels of W and Z bosons: is there a definitive number of them? I guess there will always be some heavily suppressed ones that don't really amount much, but I'd like to see some sort of document that doesn't just say "sum of all hadronic decay channels is 69.7%" or something like that.

Can anyone point me to a document that lists them as completely as possible?

• – anna v Oct 18 '17 at 15:56
• Well I guess that's the best I can get...but they still sum hadrons together, I was hoping there would be some kind of list of the specific hadronic decays. – John W. Oct 20 '17 at 16:26
• At a particle level, the answer is clear-cut: because the SM has (obviously) a finite content, there are only so many decay channels possible; i.e.: $W\to\ell\nu$, $W\to qq'$, $Z\to\ell\bar{\ell}$, $Z\to q\bar{q}$. In a detector, you don't observe free quarks however; they will hadronise (colour confinement in QCD), forming various collimated bound states; these are called jets, and are the experimental signature of quarks e.g. at the LHC experiments. The precise nature of those hadrons isn't important, but tagging the main flavour (e.g. $b$ vs "light") might be. – Demosthene Nov 29 '17 at 23:31