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Laser beat wave heating of magnetized plasma via electron cyclotron damping is proposed and analyzed. A plasma density ripple is presumed to exist across the magnetic field. Two collinear lasers propagating along the magnetic field exert a beat frequency ponderomotive force on electrons, driving a large amplitude Bernstein quasi-mode which suffers cyclotron damping on electrons. Finite Larmor radius effects play an important role in the heating. Electron temperature initially rises linearly with time. As the temperature rises cyclotron damping becomes stronger and temperature rises rapidly. The process, however, requires ripple wavelength shorter than the wavelength of the beat wave.
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