A method of altering characteristics of a workpiece comprising electrically conductive material includes exposing the workpiece to a magnetic field and exposing the workpiece to an induction field configured to cause heating current to flow through only a selected portion of the workpiece while the workpiece is exposed to the magnetic field. The induction field has a frequency such that the selected portion is less than the entire body of the workpiece or substantially only the outer surface of the workpiece. The method of altering characteristics of a workpiece may further include heating the entire body of the workpiece to a first temperature while the workpiece is exposed to the magnetic field and before exposing the workpiece to the induction field. The method of altering characteristics of a workpiece may further include quenching and tempering the workpiece in the magnetic field.
FEDERAL FUNDING NOTICE
 Portions of the present disclosure were developed with federal funding supplied under Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) No. NFE-08-01224 between Eaton Corporation and UT-Battelle, LLC. UT-Battelle, LLC operates and manages Oak Ridge National Laboratory for the United States Department of Energy. The Government has certain rights in this invention.