• chitosan;
  • surfactants;
  • adsorption


Chitosan-based polymeric surfactants (CBPSs) were prepared by the partial N-acylation of amine groups on chitosan with acid anhydrides. To apply the CBPSs for the removal of Cr(VI) commonly found in wastewater, a batch test was conducted to evaluate the adsorption capacity. The removal efficiency of Cr(VI) by the CBPS depended on several factors, including the solution pH, CBPS dose, and ionic strength. Our results show that the CBPSs exhibited a greater adsorption capacity for Cr(VI) than have other modified chitosans reported in the literature. The maximum adsorption capacity of Cr(VI) was 180 mg/g of CBPS at a final pH of 5.3. From the results of dynamic light scattering, we propose that the removal mechanism of Cr(VI) by the CBPSs was mainly through the adsorption of negatively charged chromium ions by positively charged amine groups on the CBPSs followed by colloidal precipitation because of its lower solubility. Conclusively, we found that the CBPS was significantly effective for the removal of Cr(VI). © 2005 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci 96: 44–50, 2005