Artificial lab manipulation of LD cycles has enabled simulations of the disruptive conditions found in modern human societies, such as jet-lag, night-work and light at night. New techniques using animal models have been developed, and these can greatly improve our understanding of circadian disruption. Some of these techniques, such as in vivo bioluminescence assays, require minimum external light. This requirement is challenging because the usual lighting protocols applied in circadian desynchronization experiments rely on considerable light input. Here, we present a novel LD regimen that can disrupt circadian rhythms with little light per day, based on computer simulations of a model limit-cycle oscillator. The model predicts that a single light pulse per day has the potential to disturb rhythmicity when pulse times are randomly distributed within an interval. Counterintuitively, the rhythm still preserves an underlying 24-h periodicity when this interval is as large as 14 h, indicating that day/night cues are still detectable. Only when pulses are spread throughout the whole 24-h day does the rhythm lose any day-to-day period correlation. In addition, the model also reveals that stronger pulses of brighter light should exacerbate the disrupting effects. We propose the use of this LD schedule-which would be compatible with the requirements of in vivo bioluminescence assays-to help understand circadian disruption and associated illnesses.