研究成果：Y. Feng, B. Sun, A. Zeng*, Cascade of links in complex networks, Phys, Lett. A(2017), http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.physleta.2016.11.008
Cascading failure is an important process which has been widely used to model catastrophic events such as blackouts and financial crisis in real systems. However, so far most of the studies in the literature focus on the cascading process on nodes, leaving the possibility of link cascade overlooked. In many real cases, the catastrophic events are actually formed by the successive disappearance of links. Examples exist in the financial systems where the firms and banks (i.e. nodes) still exist but many financial trades (i.e. links) are gone during the crisis, and the air transportation systems where the airports (i.e. nodes) are still functional but many airlines (i.e. links) stop operating during bad weather. In this letter, we develop a link cascade model in complex networks. With this model, we find that both artificial and real networks tend to collapse even if a few links are initially attacked. However, the link cascading process can be effectively terminated by setting a few strong nodes in the network which do not respond to any link reduction. Finally, a simulated annealing algorithm is used to optimize the location of these strong nodes, which significantly improves the robustness of the networks against the link cascade.