Quenched and tempered steel is a high strength and abrasion resistant steel with high fabrication qualities and mechanical properties. To increase the hardness and strength of steel, it is subjected to processes such as quenching and tempering.
On the other hand, the process of quenching comprises heating of steel, which is followed by immediate cooling in water, oil, and forced air or inert gases such as nitrogen. With respect to various parameters such as heating temperature, cooling method, cooling speed, this process of quenching is monitored and controlled.
Steel will be subjected to tempering to attain greater toughness and ductility by decreasing hardness, after the completion of the steel quenching process to a required hardened state.
Heating the steel to below the critical point for a certain period of time is required to achieve tempering and it needs to be cooled in still air at a particular cooling rate.
Parameters such as heating temperature and time are dependent on hardness and mechanical properties of the steel desired. Steel becomes less ductile and more brittle after the tempering process, that too without compromising hardness. The steel becomes more harder and tougher, as a result of these two processes.
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