Methyl tert-butyl ether (MTBE) has become a ubiquitous contaminant because of its wide usage in oxygenated gasoline. Due to high water solubility, low Henry's law constant, and low partition coefficient, MTBE is difficult to remove from contaminated groundwater water by traditional water treatment technologies. To evaluate the effectiveness of adsorption technology on the treatment of MTBE, kinetic and equilibrium adsorption of MTBE onto different adsorbents were elucidated. Two types of adsorbents were selected, including a coal-based (F600) activated carbon, a coconut-based (Unicarb) activated carbon, and two synthetic resins (Ambersorb 563 and 572). Adsorption capacity of F600 and Ambersorb 572 show that both adsorbents are the promising candidates for the removal of MTBE among the four adsorbents. Adsorption capacity of MTBE for F600 and Ambersorb 572 were lower in the natural water systems than that in the deionized water. The adsorption capacity in the nature water decreased as the initial concentration decreases, revealing that natural organic matter has strong impact on the adsorption capacity. The experimental data also indicates that the percent remaining of MTBE is independent on the target compound's initial concentration in STL groundwater for a given F600 or Ambersorb 572 dosage. In addition, HSDM can describe the adsorption kinetics for MTBE on F600 carbon and Ambersorb 572 in deionized water. In addition, HSDM can describe the adsorption kinetics for MTBE on F600 carbon and Ambersorb 572 in deionized water, and the best-fit surface diffusion coefficient are 4.0 × 10 -8 cm2/min for F600 and 9.0 × 10-8 cm2/min for Ambersorb 572.