Nanoantennas absorb short-wavelength electromagnetic radiation, such as visible and infarred light, through resonance -- the same pheonomenon at work in familiar communications antenna where ambient radio waves or microwaves induce electric current. To use resonance to convert sunlight to electricity, a device would have antenna that are extremely small -- on the scale of the wavelengths of visible and infarred light -- and densely packed.
Scientists at Idaho National Laboratory are working on a method of fabricating naonantenna arrays that will take the form on an inexpensive flexible sheets of material. 1
Although nano-scale manufacturing methods that would allow economical production of nanoantenna-based solar collectors have only recently become available, the idea dates back to the 1980s and the work of Alvin M. Marks. 2
2. Alvin M. MARKS, rexresearch.com,