In this study, NiCu composite coating was electrochemically deposited on a copper electrode (Cu/NiCu) and tested for hydrogen evolution reaction (HER) in 1 M KOH solution for long-term electrolysis with the help of cathodic current-potential curves and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) techniques. The bulk and surface composition of the coating was determined using atomic absorption spectroscopy (AAS) and energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) analysis. The surface morphology was investigated by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The effect of electrolysis on the corrosion behavior of the Cu/NiCu electrode was also reported. It was found that the NiCu coating had a compact and porous structure with good time stability. The HER activity of the coating was stable over 120 h electrolysis and the HER mechanism was not modified during the operation. The corrosion tests showed that the corrosion resistance of the Cu/NiCu electrode changed when a cathodic current was applied to the electrolysis system. (C) 2009 International Association for Hydrogen Energy. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.