A charge air cooler (also known as an intercooler) is used to cool engine air after it has passed through a turbocharger, but before it enters the engine.
The idea is to return the air to a lower temperature, for the optimum power for the combustion process within the engine.
Charge air coolers range in size depending on the engine. The smallest are most often referred to as intercoolers and are attached to automobile engines or truck engines. The largest are reserved for use on huge marine diesel engines, and can weigh over 2 tonnes (see picture).
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