Lanthanum (La) – Periodic Table [Element Information & More]

lanthanum element periodic table

Lanthanum element (La) is in period 6 of a periodic table. Lanthanum is in the d-block and it is classified as a lanthanide on the periodic table.

There is a lot more information related to lanthanum which is mentioned in the Information Table given below.

So let’s dive right into it!

Table of contents

Lanthanum Element (Information Table)

The important data related to lanthanum element is given in the table below.

Appearance of lanthanumSilvery white metallic appearance
Atomic number of lanthanum57
Symbol of lanthanumLa
Atomic mass of lanthanum138.91 u
Protons, Neutrons & Electrons in lanthanumProtons: 57, Neutrons: 82, Electrons: 57
State of lanthanum (at STP)Solid
Period number of lanthanum in periodic table6
Block of lanthanum in periodic tabled-block
Category of lanthanumLanthanides
Bohr model or Electrons per shell or Electrons arrangement in lanthanum2, 8, 18, 18, 9, 2
Electron configuration of lanthanum[Xe] 5d1 6s2
Orbital diagram of lanthanumorbital diagram of lanthanum
Electronegativity of lanthanum (on pauling scale)1.1
Atomic radius of lanthanum (van der Waals radius)240 picometers
Density of lanthanum6.15 g/cm3
1st ionization energy of lanthanum5.577 eV
Main isotope of lanthanum139La
Melting point of lanthanum1193 K or 920 °C or 1688 °F
Boiling point of lanthanum3737 K or 3464 °C or 6267 °F
Crystal structure of lanthanumDouble Hexagonal Close Packed (DHCP)
Discovery of lanthanumBy Carl Gustaf Mosander in 1838

Also see: Interactive Periodic Table (It has rotating bohr models as well as many other details of all the 118 elements in a single periodic table).

Lanthanum element in Periodic table

The Lanthanum element (La) has the atomic number 57 and is located in period 6. Lanthanum is a metal and it is classified as a lanthanide group element.

Click on above elements in the periodic table to see their information.

Facts about lanthanum

Here are a few interesting facts about the lanthanum element.

  1. Lanthanum was given its name from a Greek word “lanthano”, which means “to be hidden”.
  2. The concentration of lanthanum in the earth’s crust is around 32 ppm.
  3. The annual production of lanthanum in the entire world is around 12500 tons.
  4. The leading producers of lanthanum are China, Russia and Malaysia.
  5. Lanthanum is the most reactive rare earth element on the periodic table.

Properties of lanthanum

Here is a list of some physical properties and chemical properties of lanthanum.

Physical properties of lanthanum

  • Lanthanum has a silvery white metallic appearance.
  • Lanthanum is a malleable as well as ductile which means that it can be drawn into thin sheets and wires. 
  • Lanthanum is a soft metal. It can also be cut with a knife.
  • Lanthanum has a DHCP (double hexagonal close packed) crystal structure.
  • The melting point and boiling point of lanthanum is 1193 K and 3737 K respectively.

Chemical properties of lanthanum

  • Lanthanum reacts with water at room temperature.
  • Lanthanum also shows chemical reactions with boron, carbon, nitrogen as well as halogens (fluorine, chlorine, bromine, etc).
  • Lanthanum also reacts with oxygen in the air and it tarnishes slowly.
  • Lanthanum has an electronegativity of 1.1 on the pauling scale.

Uses of lanthanum

Here are some uses of the lanthanum element.

  • Lanthanum oxide is used in manufacturing of night vision glasses as well as some camera lenses.
  • The rechargeable batteries of hybrid automobiles also use lanthanum.
  • Lanthanum is also used in carbon arc lighting used in studio lightings.
  • Lanthanum is also used in manufacturing of nodular cast iron.

External resources:

  1. Lanthanum – Wikipedia. (2016, July 10). Lanthanum – Wikipedia.
  2. Lanthanum – Element information, properties and uses | Periodic Table. (n.d.). Lanthanum – Element Information, Properties and Uses | Periodic Table.
  3. Prohaska, T., et al. (2022, May 1). Standard atomic weights of the elements 2021 (IUPAC Technical Report). Pure and Applied Chemistry, 94(5), 573–600.
  4. Haynes, W. M. (Ed.). (2014, June 4). CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics.
  5. Kaye, G W.C., & Laby, T H. Tables of physical and chemical constants. 15th Edition. United States.
  6. Sansonetti, J. E., & Martin, W. C. (2005, December). Handbook of Basic Atomic Spectroscopic Data. Journal of Physical and Chemical Reference Data, 34(4), 1559–2259.
  7. Bondi, A. (1964, March). van der Waals Volumes and Radii. The Journal of Physical Chemistry, 68(3), 441–451.
  8. P. (n.d.). Lanthanum | La (Element) – PubChem. Lanthanum | La (Element) – PubChem.
  9. It’s Elemental – The Element Lanthanum. (n.d.). It’s Elemental – the Element Lanthanum.
  10. Periodic Table of Elements: Los Alamos National Laboratory. (n.d.). Periodic Table of Elements: Los Alamos National Laboratory.
  11. Atomic Data for Lanthanum (La). (n.d.). Atomic Data for Lanthanum (La).
  12. Holden, et al. (2018, December 1). IUPAC Periodic Table of the Elements and Isotopes (IPTEI) for the Education Community (IUPAC Technical Report). Pure and Applied Chemistry, 90(12), 1833–2092.
  13. Zhang, et al. (2011, January 11). Corrected Values for Boiling Points and Enthalpies of Vaporization of Elements in Handbooks. Journal of Chemical & Engineering Data, 56(2), 328–337.

Jay is an educator and has helped more than 100,000 students in their studies by providing simple and easy explanations on different science-related topics. With a desire to make learning accessible for everyone, he founded Knords Learning, an online chemistry learning platform that provides students with easily understandable explanations.

Read more about our Editorial process.

Leave a Comment