A nanoconverter is capable of directly generating electricity through a nanostructure embedded in a polymer layer experiencing differential thermal expansion in a stress transfer zone. High surface-to-volume ratio semiconductor nanowires or nanotubes (such as ZnO, silicon, carbon, etc.) are grown either aligned or substantially vertically aligned on a substrate. The resulting nanoforest is then embedded with the polymer layer, which transfers stress to the nanostructures in the stress transfer zone, thereby creating a nanostructure voltage output due to the piezoelectric effect acting on the nanostructure. Electrodes attached at both ends of the nanostructures generate output power at densities of .about.20 nW/cm.sup.2 with heating temperatures of .about.65.degree. C. Nanoconverters arrayed in a series parallel arrangement may be constructed in planar, stacked, or rolled arrays to supply power to nano- and micro-devices without use of external batteries.