RFL History


RFL was established in 1922 as “Radio Frequency Laboratories” by Richard W. Seabury in rural Boonton Township, New Jersey. Initially the company’s focus was on research and development, which included designing amplifier circuits, a single-control broadcast receiver, and an automatic volume control. In 1929, war hero General James H. Doolittle made the first successful “blind flight” with instrument-only take-off and landing using RFL technology. Today, the old grass airstrip behind the RFL facility where this historic event occurred, is utilized as community soccer fields and includes a beautiful playground named “Doolittle’s Landing”.

During World War II, RFL was active in the design and manufacture of electrical test and calibration instrumentation and magnet/de-magnetizing equipment. These were followed by other innovations such as thermocontrol, measurement instruments for industrial applications and toroidal coils used in filter applications.

The blackout of 1965 in New York City and the entire Northeast Corridor of the United States was caused by a single short-circuit in one protection scheme. After close investigation, the power utility industry realized that more reliable primary and back-up protection schemes were required for the nation’s power protection network.

RFL seized this opportunity to work with its customers to develop new solutions for better communications equipment. These efforts propelled the company to become a world leader in the supply of communications and protection products and services for the electric utilities.

By the 1980’s, RFL was deeply engrained in the development and manufacture of instrumentation and communications products and systems. The company was the first to introduce substation ruggedized multiplexer systems to the electric utility industry and has since released second and third generation products that are installed world-wide.


Throughout our history, RFL has dedicated its resources to providing the highest-quality products and services to meet the needs of our customers. Our reputation is earned by the performance of our products and people.

The focus of our business is the development and supply of rugged communications and protection systems for our customers in the power utilities and the transportation marketplaces. Product offerings include multiplexers, powerline carrier systems, control and telemetry technology, teleprotection, and protective relaying systems.

Implementation of communications systems for critical applications has remained our primary focus. Understanding the need for reliable network infrastructure has led to the development and introduction of redundancy into our multiplexer offerings. This industry-first feature provides continuous component backup which ensures that there is no interruption of service for the customer.

RFL has a global network of experienced sales and service professionals, distributors and representatives who provide personal service to our customers. These resources are located regionally around the world, with strong support from the Boonton Township, New Jersey headquarters. The ever-increasing demand on the world electricity supply is matched by the growing burden on the nation’s transportation infrastructure. As traffic demands on highways and the transportation infrastructure in general grows to exceed design capacity, the demand for better technologies to manage traffic will be addressed through improvements in technology.

RFL provides a complete range of technical services that complement our industry leading product line, including project specifications, system design and custom development, project management, commissioning, training, and 24 hours a day, 365 days a year customer service, anywhere in the world.

Products are manufactured in Boonton Township, New Jersey where the facility provides 85,000 square feet of state of the art manufacturing capability. The entire operation is managed by an accredited ISO 9001 Quality Management System that is audited regularly. RFL’s commitment to quality and customer service is unparalleled in the industry and is constantly scrutinized to identify areas for improvement.


Through nine decades, RFL has thrived on continuously adapting to the challenges of changing markets and meeting them with revolutionary technology solutions. The power requirements now and into the future will outpace current power generation and distribution capacity. Several factors including an increasing rise in the world’s population and the exponential growth and dependency on the internet will continue to stress the world’s power grids.

RFL has adapted to these challenges by expanding our product offerings to address systems capacity growth. We continue with the internal development of exciting new products and constantly explore strategic partnerships at home and abroad in order to provide our customers with a competitive advantage. Our resources are focused on developing solutions for the power utility market and addressing the needs of the transportation sector.

We will continue to innovate and strive to become the world’s premier supplier of ruggedized communications solutions using all available technologies and data sources and ensuring valuable input from our existing client base and ever expanding list of welcome new customers is part of the solution.

RFL’s integrated systems approach to new business development sets us apart from the competition by allowing us to develop products and services based on customer need. We are looking forward to exciting new challenges yet we never forget the legacy that built the foundation to allow us to reach our goals.

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Utility industry and electric utility white papers by RFL providing communications and protection solutions to today's challenges, such as migrating data from leased lines.

Helping Utilities Move Forward in IP Migration

Multipoint-to-Multipoint Protective Relaying Signaling Using Digital Communications and Built-In Logic

Read our Electric Utility White Papers

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RFL offers a 24-hour emergency service program that provides specialized service anytime, anywhere in the world. All of RFL's products are engineered and manufactured to the highest-quality standards and are supported by a team of highly trained customer service engineers.

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