The Low Intensity Tactical Emitter (LITE) was intended to be a low intensity illumination tool for SOCOM elements to use during breeching operations while using night vision devices (NVD’s).
The LITE technical manual states the following…
Purpose of Equipment:
The LITE provides an easy to mount, multi-use, low intensity, visible light source. Mounting the LITE is easily accomplished by using the integral rail grabber mounting bracket, which enables the device to be attached directly to a MIL-STD-1913 Rail Interface System (RIS) without the use of tools.
To install the battery, you push in on the emitter head and turn counter-clockwise. The emitter head then comes off. Install battery. Reverse process to reinstall the emitter head.
The complaint from the field was that weapon mounted lights in use at the time were washing out NVD’s and compromising unaided night vision also.
These were apparently issued in small numbers, quickly feel out of favor and were passed on to conventional units or just never issued on a regular basis. I found reference of brief use of the LITE by units on shotguns before being completely dismissed by the services.
The image below shows the illumination provided by the LITE. This photo was shot in zero light with illumination provided by the LITE only. In the photo, I am point the Colt 2018 LE6920SOCOM at a door knob from a stand-off distance of about three feet.
I hope you found this quick look at a unique piece of SOCOM small arms history interesting.