Motorola Solutions is betting drones will be the future of public safety.

Shaumburg, IL-based Motorola Solutions announced that it has invested in Massachusetts-based CyPhy Works, a drone maker that has created microfilament tether technology that gives unmanned aerial vehicles extended flying time. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Motorola Solutions, a maker of communications devices like two-way radios used by law enforcement and other public safety officials, said CyPhy Works’ drones are “well suited for use in public safety and commercial applications,” and the investment will help better connect public safety officers and commercial customers with real-time data.

“Real-time information is a powerful tool for our public safety and commercial customers,” Paul Steinberg, chief technology officer at Motorola Solutions, said in a statement. “A tethered drone collecting situational awareness in large or hard-to-reach locations quickly puts eyes and ears on the scene, enabling our customers to read the moment, know what’s relevant and help them make fast decisions about how to deploy resources. This can help not only resolve incidents faster but also provide information to help prevent critical situations from happening in the first place.”

The microfilament technology was particularly attractive to Motorola, the company said, as it allows for longer flight times with fewer battery changes.

CyPhy Works, founded by iRobot co-founder Helen Greiner, has raised $12.5 million since it launched in 2008.

“The opportunity to offer flying robots, or UAVs, to the public safety and commercial sectors for imaging, mapping, monitoring and other applications is truly exciting,” added Greiner. “Our robust platform is specifically designed for field operations in rough real-world conditions.”

CyPhy Works is the latest of several new investments Motorola Solutions has made recently. This year the company announced investments in VocalZoom, a developer of sensors for speech enhancement, and SceneDoc, maker of “public safety’s trusted digital notebook.”

By:  Jim Dallke

Chicago Inno