Apple receives patent for solar-powered MacBook

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Apple looks set to go solar with one of its next lines of MacBooks.

The U.S. Patent and Trademark office this week granted the Cupertino company a patent for an "electronic device display module," a two-sided display embedded with a photovoltaic unit that could serve as the screen and lid of a MacBook-like laptop computer.

"The rear plate may be formed from electrochromic glass and may cover photovoltaic cells and touch sensors," read the patent abstract.

The Patent and Trademark Office published an Apple application in October that described a way of equipping electronic devices with internal converters in order to use external solar panels.

While Apple has long been rumored to be developing PV technology for its MacBooks and mobile devices, the company has yet to announce definite plans.

Speculation about Apple’s plans in the area of renewable energy grew after the company bought a module manufacturing facilitgy from First Solar in Mesa, Arizona, in October.

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