Apple is looking into ways of using the sun to power the MacBook. Read next: How to solar-charge a MacBook

One newly granted patent describes a method for harnessing sunlight to illuminate a MacBook's display.

The "External Light Illumination of Display Screens" patent is for a light harness that magnetically attaches to the back of a MacBook, or is built into the MacBook. This harness draws power from the sun, thereby reducing the power drain on the battery.

The patent states that the reflector will "pass a first portion of light from an external light source through the translucent layer and towards the display screen for illuminating the display screen."

Patently Apple notes that it is the seventh solar related patent Apple has gained in the past two years.

Last year Apple came under fire from environmentalists who pointed out that its MacBooks were not green enough because they are not easily upgradable and parts are glued in, making them difficult to dismantle for recycling.

Follow Karen Haslam on Twitter / Follow MacworldUK on Twitter


EPEAT claim that Apple's ultrathin MacBooks are upgradable will mean 'more e-waste', Greenpeace

Apple's new iPods come with dissolvable packaging