Sanden Totten Science Reporter

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Contact Sanden Totten

Sanden Totten is KPCC's Science Reporter. He covers everything from space exploration and medical technology to endangered species and the latest earthquake research. He's also co-producer of Brains On!, a podcast for kids and curious adults about the scientific mysteries of the universe.

Before joining KPCC's Science Desk, Sanden was a producer for Take Two and the Madeleine Brand Show. He began his career in journalism at Minnesota Public Radio where he co-created the show "In The Loop," and helped develop the Public Insight Network, a crowd-sourcing tool designed to bring unique perspectives to the news.

Sanden is the winner of several honors, including the Radio and TV News Association’s Golden Mike for “Best Radio Medical and Science Reporting” and the National Entertainment Journalism's award for “Best Radio News Story.” In 2011 he was a Knight Science Journalism Fellow at MIT, he graduated from Oberlin College in 2004 with a BA in Psychology and English.

Sanden has lived in Sweden and Japan and speaks both languages. He's a fan of comics, fast music and movies about time travel.

Stories by Sanden Totten

Mars lander missing since 2003 finally found

A European Space Agency Martian lander that went missing on Christmas Day, 2003 has finally been found thanks to high resolution images from NASA's HiRISE orbiter.

New program offers funds for Angelenos to prepare for quakes

The California Earthquake Authority and the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services are offering select homeowners grants of up to $3,000 for earthquake retrofits.

6 things to know about Pluto before NASA's latest mission

Pluto may no longer be a planet, but it is still a fascinating place. Here are some cool facts about this very special dwarf planet.

NASA to track soil moisture from space with SMAP satellite

Later this month NASA will launch a satellite designed to measure global soil moisture. The data will help predict drought and other weather.

SpaceX attempts to make history with risky landing

SpaceX will attempt to launch and land a Falcon 9 rocket after sending a payload to the International Space Station. This could pave the way for reusable rockets.

More quake-vulnerable buildings turning up in Santa Monica

Officials hoped to have a list of all vulnerable "soft story" buildings compiled by the summer of 2014. Initial surveys missed some structures.

JPL's Dawn spacecraft nearing mysterious dwarf planet

The probe seeks to determine whether the largest body in the Asteroid Belt has subterranean oceans of liquid water.

Officials seek ways to protect waterways from quakes

The aqueducts that supply most of Southern California's water could be taken out by a single quake. Officials are looking for ways to protect these vital waterways.

Despite resupply delays, space station fine on supplies

A SpaceX resupply mission bound for the International Space Station has been delayed until next year. Despite this, astronauts have plenty of food and water.

Scientists releasing more wasps to save citrus trees

A second species of wasp is being used to curb the number of invasive Asian citrus psyllids in California in hopes of saving the state's $2 billion citrus industry.

Earthquake warning system secures $5 million in funding

Scientists have tried to make the public alert system available, but money has been a problem. Now, $5 million has been allocated in a major spending bill approved by Congress.

Who pays? Renters, owners worry about costs of earthquake retrofit plan

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti is calling for mandatory retrofits for thousands of seismically vulnerable buildings but renters and owners worry about the cost.

LA unveils new earthquake preparedness plan

Proposal calls mandatory retrofits for tens of thousands of buildings. Building owners have been resistant to similar plans in the past because of the costs.

Drought: Sierra Mountain snowpack 'off to a good start'

California is still in a severe drought, but this week's storm left the Sierra Mountain snowpack with a decent amount of water and more is expected.

Calif. drought is the worst in 1,200 years, new study says

A new analysis found that California's current three year drought is the driest period since the 9th century. Drier years are expected as the region heats up.