The averaged-Lagrangian method is applied to nonlinear wave-particle interactions in an infinite, homogeneous, magnetic-field-free plasma. The specific example of Langmuir waves is considered, and the combined effects of four-wave interactions and wave-particle interactions are treated. It is demonstrated how the latter lead to diffusion in velocity space, and the quasilinear diffusion equation is derived. The analysis is generalized to the random phase approximation. The paper concludes with a summary of the method as applied in Parts 1–3 of the paper.
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