Chapter 30 - Lets make ice!

Translation: Thrax

Editing: Tohru

Upon returning to the royal palace, I immediately resumed my official duties. Thanks to Shreegan's boot camp, I don't feel like I've had any summer vacation at all, with all the swimming, horseback riding, archery, and swordsmanship. Well, each activity had a sense of grandeur and spaciousness that is unique to the Wiles Viscounty, so I consider it a valuable experience. If we were to do them at the palace, I would have to join the knights in the riding grounds and archery range.

In between our training sessions, Jack, Silvia, Serea, and I would spend time together having tea or going on picnics. We've become very good friends, and I can confidently say that we have a close relationship.

According to Serea, Jack has completely changed his character from the arrogant, pretentious, and boastful character with an inferiority complex that completely neglected Silvia in the game. It's surprising how much he has transformed.

When we're not around, they even act all lovey-dovey together. It's just unbelievable.

"It's thanks to you, Shin-sama. You've been a great role model for him," Serea says.

But I have a feeling they're just envious of us and our relationship. Well, that's what I think, at least.

In the capital, the scorching heat has been relentless, and it seems that cases of heatstroke have occurred both at the orphanage and the hospital.

At the hospital, they applied towels soaked in water to cool down the patients, while at the orphanage, they turned the large bath into a cold-water bath for the children to enter. Thankfully, no serious incidents occurred.

At the hospital, they said, ‘It would be great if we could make ice...’

As the supervisors of the hospital, we also share responsibility. So, it's a problem we want to solve.

In this world, there are countless ways to heat or boil water, but the technology to make ice does not exist yet. I have heard that mages are capable of it, but it seems that only advanced countries, like Halfa where my sister married into, have skilled mages.

It's part of what makes them a powerful nation. They can even use magic to cure illnesses and injuries. However, mid-tier countries like ours have not yet established such a system.

There are many people who develop high fevers due to colds or infectious diseases, and we know that cooling can bring them relief from bruises and burns. But since we don't have any mages, we can't make ice. I wonder what we should do...

Upon returning to the palace, when we were trying to relax in Serea's room, she said, ‘In my world, we had something called a refrigerator.’

"What's that?"

"It's a box used to store food, and the inside gets cold."

"That sounds amazing! How does it work?"

"...I can understand that it runs with electricity and a motor, but I have no idea how it actually gets cold." [TN-1] [EN-1]

Ah... So close! I really want to know the details of how it works!

But if she doesn't know it in the first place, there's no way for her to remember. It's a shame.

I have no idea what this "electricity" or "motor" are either.

"There are pumps in this world, right?"

"Well, of course. They are used to pump water, like the hand-operated pumps in the kitchen that draw up groundwater."

"What about vacuum pumps?"

"What are those?"

"They are pumps that continuously sucks air out."

"If water can be pumped up, it seems plausible to be able to pump air as well... I'm not sure if they exist, though."

Serea ponders for a moment and suggests, "I've seen on an educational television program that if you fill a container with water, seal it tightly, and remove the air inside, the water will freeze."

What's television?

"Huh? Water freezes just by removing the air?"



"I don't know."

Yeah, it's hard to understand. I have no clue either.

"...Maybe we should consult someone at the academy about it."


The next day, I visited the academy where Spruce worked, by myself, to meet with a physics teacher. Today, Serea couldn't come because she had to attend princess education at the palace.

"If you need a physics teacher, there's a man who recently invented an alcohol thermometer."

"An alcohol thermometer?!"

It's interesting how the alcohol we helped produce is proving useful in unexpected ways...

When I went to hear more about the subject, I was greeted with a young researcher named Celsius.

"I have been studying the properties of alcohol, and I noticed that it expands significantly with heat. So, I thought about applying it to create a thermometer."

Saying that, he showed me the thermometer.

"I enclosed coloured alcohol in a glass tube, like this, and created a design where the expanded alcohol moves up and down the narrow tube, indicating the temperature. We used to use mercury for thermometers, but, as you may know, mercury is toxic. With this alcohol thermometer, you can measure temperatures ranging from freezing to boiling water."

Then, he boiled water using an alcohol lamp and showed me the thermometer.

"I'm glad that the prince is interested in this kind of research! Do you know? Boiling water always reaches a constant temperature. No matter how much you increase the heat, the temperature of the water won't go higher than that specific temperature."

That's fascinating! I never knew that water had such a characteristic.

Now that he mentions it, it's true that water doesn't keep getting hotter no matter how much you increase the heat. It just turns into steam.

"So, what about frozen water?!"

That's what I really want to know.

"Since it's summer now, we don't have any ice, but even ice water remains at a constant temperature. When winter comes, I can show you ice formed on a puddle."

"Well, the thing is, I came here to consult about how to make that ice."

"Huh... Isn't that something you'd have to ask a foreign mage for?"

Celsius is surprised. It seems the idea of making ice never crossed his mind.

"Do you have a vacuum pump?"

"Yes, we do. We use a vacuum pump to create a vacuum in the glass tube and draw alcohol into it for making this thermometer."

"That's it! With that, we can make ice!"


Celsius is surprised again.

He showed me that vacuum pump.

It's a hand-operated pump with a handle that you rotate, causing a piston to move up and down, creating a vacuum inside the glass container. With this pump, they can evacuate the air from the glass tube of the thermometer and fill it with alcohol.

If you put water into a vacuum, it’s supposed to turn into ice.

"...Is that true? I've never heard of that before."

"I haven't personally seen it either."

"Shall we give it a try!"

After filling a beaker with water, we then transfer the beaker into a glass container.

Then, the container is connected to a vacuum pump, and Celsius starts turning the handle round and round.

...No matter how much we do it, there seems to be no change.

"Why... why isn’t …it..."

Celsius, who is turning the pump, seems to be getting tired.

"Let me take over."

"No, making the prince do something like that…..."

"I'm the one who suggested it."

"Huff... huff... Alright, let me call someone. Keep going, keep going."

Many people gathered around because, after all, it's the prince of this country who is desperately sweating and turning the handle of the vacuum pump. They were wondering what on earth was happening.

"I'll take over, Your Highness."

Everyone took turns to help, and as they did so, the water in the beaker inside the glass container began to bubble and boil.

"Wait, the water is boiling..."

"Eh? Why?"

"Does water boil when it's under a vacuum?"

The researchers are all surprised.

"Wait a minute, weren't we trying to make ice? Boiling is not what we wanted, right?"

"Maybe it's getting hot?"

"Should we check?"

After some discussion, we decided to try touching it together.

Despite working so hard in removing the air, we ended up letting it back in. We turned the valve and whoosh, air filled the glass container. I lifted the container and...

"It's cold..."

I also touched the beaker with water. It's cold!

"Huh!? Why is it cold?"

All of us were surprised.

With this turn of events, everyone becomes enthusiastic. It's fascinating how scholars can be drawn to such situations. We start over from the beginning, connect the tube again, seal the container, and take turns rapidly turning the handle. With a large group of people, the experiment progresses with lively, fast paced movements and the sound of air being sucked out.

The boiling beaker, which had been vigorously bubbling, eventually calms down, and the water surface becomes still.

Everyone, now shirtless and sweating profusely, continues to observe while turning the handle. Suddenly, a crisp crack appears on the beaker.


Everyone is surprised. Despite the crack in the beaker, the water doesn't leak.

"No way..."

Once again, air is introduced and the container is opened.

Cautiously, I touch the beaker.

"It's frozen..."

"It's frozen!"

"It turned into ice!"

"We did it!!!"

For some reason, everyone gets excited and starts making a commotion.

"What a major discovery!"

"To think that ice can be made so easily!"

Well, it's not exactly easy. We worked up a sweat, with ten people taking turns vigorously turning the handle.

"I will conduct research on this principle! I'll explore the possibility of scaling up the device and producing ice in large quantities!"

Celsius grabs my hand and shakes it vigorously.

"Please, I thought about creating ice for patients with high fever at the hospital..."

"I’ll make it! When I make it, the first thing I’ll do is deliver it to the hospital!"

It seems I can expect great things. Let's entrust it to him.

Returning to the palace from the academy, Serea was having her afternoon tea after finishing her lessons.

"Serea! We were able to make ice!"

"Oh, really? How did you do it?"

"We used the vacuum pump to remove the air, and the water froze."

"I see. That's good to know."

...Her reaction seems rather muted.

"The people at the academy were all thrilled about this major discovery..."


Serea seems surprised by that.

For Serea, it might be something she has seen before or simply something that is considered commonplace.

A few days later, we received a message from the academy explaining about heat of vaporisation and latent heat, but I didn't quite understand it.

"When water boils, it turns into steam and heat escapes, which prevents the temperature from rising further. By removing the air, we force it to boil. We can extract heat through evaporation. We decided to call it latent heat. You know how it feels cool when you wipe your skin with alcohol for disinfection? It's similar to that."

Is it really the same?

I thought we were extracting heat using the pump, but it seems that it’s a bit different.

Anyway, with the ability to make ice, they are planning to collaborate with other departments and work on scaling up the equipment. They are considering using wind power or hydraulic power to operate the pump, or even using steam engines powered by recently developed coal combustion, in order to create a device capable of mass-producing ice. They will be submitting a budget request for this project and would like me to be credited as one of the researchers.

"No, the idea that water freezes when subjected to a vacuum was actually suggested by my fiancée, Serea, so please include her name instead." I said, surprising everyone.

It seems that Serea might have her name listed as a co-researcher in the research paper once again.

"You see, regardless of the amount of ice, ice water maintains a constant temperature! Temperature measurements have varied depending on the thermometer used in the past, but I want to set this as 0 degrees Celsius and establish 100 degrees Celsius as the reference for boiling water!"

Celsius explains as he inserts a thermometer into the beaker filled with ice.

When will you leave, Celsius……

[TN-1] I’m glad that she doesn’t just know how every single convenient thing works, and they just deus ex the whole story.

[EN-1] Without looking it up, I vaguely remember AC’s were originally trying to be dehumidifiers, but the specific way it moved water and air caused it to also remove heat. So, I also think this is a reasonable amount of knowledge.

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