The Mishrif Formation is one of the important carbonate reservoirs in middle, southern Iraq and throughout the Middle East. In southern Iraq, the formation provides the reservoir in oilfields such as Rumaila/West Qurna, Tuba and Zubair. The top of the Mishrif Formation is marked by a regional unconformity: a long period of emersion in Turonian (ab. 4.4 My) regionally occurred boosted by a warm humid climate, associated to heavy rainfall. In Zubair Field, within the Upper interval of Mishrif Formation, there are numerous evidences of karst features responsible of important permeability enhancements in low porosity intervals that are critical for production optimization and reservoir management purposes.

In the first phase, the integration of Multi-rate Production logging and Well Test analysis was very useful to evaluate the permeability values and to highlight the enhanced permeability (largely higher than expected Matrix permeability) intervals related to karst features; Image log analysis, on the same wells, allowed to find out a relationship between karst features and vug densities, making possible to extend the karst features identification also in wells lacking of well test and Production logging information. This approach has allowed to obtain a Karst/No Karst Supervised dataset for about 60 wells.

In the second phase different seismic and geological attributes have been considered in order to investigate possible correlations with karst features. In fact there are some parameters that show somehow a correlation with Karst and/or NoKarst wells: the Spectral Decomposition (specially 10 and 40 Hz volumes), the detection of sink-holes at top Mishrif on the Continuity Cube and its related distance, the sub-seismic Lineaments (obtained from Curvature analysis and subordinately from Continuity), distance from Top Mishrif. In the light of these results, the most meaningful parameters have been used as input data for a Neural Net Process ("Supervised Neural Network") utilizing the Supervised dataset both as a Trained dataset (70%) and as a Verification dataset (30%). A probability 3D Volume of Karst features was finally obtained; the comparison with verification dataset points out an error range around 0.2 that is to say that the rate of success of the probability Volume is about 80%.

The final outcomes of the workflow are karst probability maps that are extremely useful to guide new wells location and trajectory. Actually, two proof of concept case histories have demonstrated the reliability of this approach. The newly drilled wells, with optimized paths according to these prediction-maps, have intercepted the desired karst intervals as per the subsequent image log interpretation, which results have been very valuable in the proper perforation strategy including low porous intervals but characterized by high vuggy density (Karst features). Based on these promising results the ongoing drilling campaign has been optimized accordingly.

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