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According to most textbook and the Wikipedia page of lanthanide contraction, the phenomenon is due to poor shielding of nuclear charge by 4f electrons. However, the σ value of 4f electrons to 6s is 1.00 in Slater’s rule, meaning that if we go through the lanthanide elements, there should be no net change in the effective nuclear charge of 6s electrons. So are they contradictory? Is it that the σ value of 4f electrons should be smaller than 1.00?

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    $\begingroup$ Slater’s rules are an approximation. You’re reading too much into them. $\endgroup$ – orthocresol Aug 5 at 11:45

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