Quenching and tempering consists of a two-stage heat-treatment process. Stage one includes hardening, in which the steel is austenitized to approximately 900°C and then quickly cooled with water or oil. Stage two consists of tempering the material to obtain the desired material properties. Quenching and tempering achieves a fine-grained and homogeneous microstructure. Quenched and tempered steel is characterized by high strength and good ductility.