The p-version of the finite element method is applied to a three-dimensional model of a galvanic system. Total galvanic currents, as well as the distributions of current and potential are computed. Comparisons are drawn between the p-type and h-type finite element formulations for solving this test problem. The p-version is shown to exhibit superior convergence behavior, and is able to resolve behavior in the anode-cathode transition region, where rapid changes occur in both the current and the potential. © 1990, The Electrochemical Society, Inc. All rights reserved.