Multiple drilling problems are being faced continuously while drilling wells in the southern Iraqi oil fields. Many of which are handled poorly and inefficiently which yields longer non-productive time due to the lack of knowledge about the source of these problems. This study aims to investigate the Basra oil fields formations from Faris to Mishrif, diagnose the potential problems, and present the optimum treatment for each problem.

Gathering of field data and previous studies on the subject, in addition to the field experience of drilling supervisors were all the information bases of this study. Southern Iraqi oil fields were studied and analyzed carefully and widely starting with upper Faris formation (the first formation) to Mishrif formation (the last formation). The discussion of each formation is carried out comprehensively presenting their characteristics. All of the potential drilling problems that might be faced during the drilling operation are discussed while presenting their cause and source. A treatment plan for each problem is presented to ensure the most suitable solution.

As a result, the formations of southern Iraqi oil fields were studied vividly and a full characterization procedure was done including all the formations (from upper Faris to Mishrif formations). For each formation, the intensity and severity of the formation is explained by presenting all the problems that have occurred in offset wells or might occur due to potential causes that could yield the problem. The reason of each drilling problem and its origin is discussed. Multiple theories were discussed and proofed of why the drilling problems are found in these formations and their seriousness, the proof of these theories is presented in this study. For each problem, a treatment is concluded to ensure best practice, minimum time consumption, and least financial losses.

Southern Iraqi oil fields behold many drilling problems that are potentially dangerous unless acted upon with maximum care. In this study, a thorough discussion that explains the causes of these problems is presented, in addition to the most suitable treatment to handle each one.

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