Since its introduction to market, the South African designed and manufactured IS certified USB to RS485 media converter has rapidly gained popularity. Jaco du Plessis, of Booyco Electronics who developed the unit for general use, says that the IS Converter complements the company’s existing range of IS products and is available on an “off the shelf” basis, or as part of a comprehensive installation.The USB to RS485 media converter is certified IS for associated apparatus category ‘ia’ Group I / IIC for a T4 temperature class. Du Plessis says this means when the unit is installed outside a hazardous area, it is now possible to communicate directly to IS serial devices installed in hazardous areas without the unit having to be in an explosion-proof enclosure.“Only when the unit is installed in a hazardous area must it be contained in such an enclosure. There is no need for external serial isolators or barriers, or even additional IS power supply units,” he adds.The unit is powered directly from the USB port on a PC. The serial communication is able to operate up to distances of 1200 metres (cable dependant). Easy-to-understand LEDs indicate the power status and TX/RX transmission on the serial communication lines, clearly indicating if there is communication on the line.All Booyco Electronics IS products are certified by an independent Certified Testing Laboratory endorsed by SANAS, in compliance with national IS standards and have batch approval certificates.