BOULDER - The University of Colorado on Friday launched CU-Boulder Crowdfunding, a site where students, faculty and staff can raise money for the ideas and projects they're working on.

Crowdfunding has become popular in recent years for entrepreneurs as a way to gain early capital for their inventions or new products by sourcing a large number of people online.

The initial pilot of CU's website, www.colorado.edu/crowdfunding, will initially have eight projects for the 30- to 45-day funding period. The site will give supporters a platform for following the progress of projects and donating.

All of the funds will be used for the projects and related expenses. The site will not provide revenue for university operations.

"We're excited about the prospect of using crowdfunding to jumpstart promising projects developed by students, faculty and staff," chancellor Phil DiStefano said in a press release. "For our initial pilot, we looked for projects across a range of academic and research disciplines, as well as for projects that provide outreach."