What is circulating?

Answer:

Circulating is the pumping of drilling fluid from the suction pit, through the drill pipe and back to the surface through the annulus.  Although mud is circulated, the terms “circulated” or “circulating” applies to this operation while drilling is temporarily suspended, to obtain samples from bottom or keep hole in condition while awaiting other operations.  The circulating fluid typically consists of fresh water or other liquid and contains clay, weighting materials and or chemicals which are circulated through the drill pipe and well bore during the rotary drilling and work-over operations.