QS Study

General properties of Lanthanides

Electronic configuration

The electronic configuration of Lanthanides is listed in the table. The fourteen electrons are filled in Ce to Lu with configuration [54Xe ]4f1-14 5d1 6s2


Oxidation states

The common oxidation state exhibited by all the lanthanides is +3 (Ln3+) in aqueous solutions and in their solid compounds. Some elements exhibit +2 and +4 states as uncommon oxidation states.

La –                  +3

Ce –                 +3, +4, +2

Pr –                  +3, +4

Nd –                 +3, +4, +2

Radii of tripositive lanthanide ions

The size of M3+ ions decreases as we move through the lanthanides from lanthanum to lutetium. This steady decrease in ionic radii of M3+ cations in the lanthanide series is called Lanthanide contraction.