Sentinel-1 SLC processing, when to deburst?

Hi, I am trying to pre-process a SLC IW Sentinel-1 image to later fuse with a Landsat image for classification.

I am following the steps I found in a previous post as follows

"for SLC data I would suggest

TOPSAR Deburst
Thermal noise removal
Apply Orbit file
Calibration to Beta0
(Speckle filtering)
Radiometric terrain flattening
Range Doppler Terrain Correction"

but if I deburst first the calibration image does produce anything and if I do calibration first, like stated in other threads then the debusrting doesn’t work with the following error “a problem occurred during the product initialisation”.

Any advice would be appreciated

If you are not planning to do interferometry I would recommend starting from GRD. Since you are going to fuse with Landsat any way the higher resolution of the SLC is probably not going to help.

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what would be the benefit of doing interferometry? Would it improve the resolution of the fused image compared to starting from GRD? thank yoy

You could add InSAR coherence-images to your classification, but these are of lower resolution than the SAR data (or the Landsat data). If you don’t do InSAR or polarimetry you should work with GRDs as it’s much less of a hassle and the resolution is already better than Landsat. that you are going to fuse with. I don’t think the better resolution of SLC will help you much or at all as you have to pay for it in higher speckle noise.

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Your processing steps are correct. The correct one should be
Thermal noise removal
Apply Orbit file
Range Doppler Terrain Correction

This is just the general processing steps for SLC product. To fuse with Landsat image, I don’t think you need to perform Radiometric terrain flattening. Like Marcus said, you should use GRD product if your goal is just to fuse SAR image with Landsat image.

What about high resolution flood mapping of urban areas ? Would you rather use SLC or GRD?

the spatial resolution is basically the same, so is the information content of the Intensity. Working with SLC doesn’t bring any benefit regarding flood mapping unless you are not following an interferometric approach.