MARSHALL, MI – Eaton Corp. stakes out a major position in the electric vehicle charging station market by teaming with Murphy Oil USA Inc., which operates 1,000 discount gas stations in 22 states, primarily co-located in parking lots at Wal-Mart Supercenters.

Eaton has developed two charging systems – one for fast charges, as in the Murphy collaboration, and a much larger system targeted for a variety of applications, such as commercial and government fleets, hotels and municipalities.

The idea behind the Murphy venture is to show EV drivers “the benefits of fast, convenient charging within the familiar environment of a traditional gas station,” Eaton explains.

It’s also designed to answer concerns about “range anxiety” by putting charging stations within easy reach at Murphy Oil’s Wal-Mart locations.

The two companies initially will test workability of the arrangement at an undisclosed Tennessee location and expand as merited.

Murphy Oil, based in El Dorado, AR, will install Eaton’s DC Quick Chargers that look similar to gasoline pumps and feature a keypad for payment.

Eaton showed the two charging systems at a technology briefing here this week.

Tim M. Old, electric vehicle infrastructure business unit manager, says the pilot project in Tennessee aims to discover how the systems are used, how long each EV is charged and other key information.

He estimates the DC Quick Charger can complete an 80% charge in 28 minutes. What that might cost an EV driver is not yet clear, but Old allows that “maybe it would be around $10.”

In addition to the Murphy deal, Old says Eaton is testing its charging stations with about 50 other companies, including General Motors Co. and Navistar International Corp.