Adsorption capacity of three antimicrobial terephthaloyl thiourea cross-linked chitosan hydrogels for Congo red dye removal from its aqueous solution has been investigated for the first time in this work. These hydrogels were prepared by reacting chitosan with various amounts of terephthaloyl diisothiocyanate cross-linker. The effect of the hydrogel structural variations and several dye adsorption processing parameters to achieve the best adsorption capacity were investigated. The hydrogels' structural variations were obtained by varying their terephthaloyl thiourea moieties content. The processing variables included initial concentration of the dye solution, temperature and time of exposure to the dye. The adsorption kinetics and isotherms showed that the sorption processes were better fitted by the pseudo-second-order equation and the Langmuir equation, respectively. On the basis of the Langmuir analysis Congo red dye gave the maximum sorption capacity of 44.248 mg/g. The results obtained confirmed that the sorption phenomena are most likely to be controlled by chemisorption process. The adsorption reaction was endothermic and spontaneous according to the calculated results of adsorption thermodynamics.

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