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

Watch video of Mars landing from NASA/JPL

NASA reports that the Mars rover is completely on its own as it approaches the outermost of the planet's two moons.

With Mars landing in sight, NASA scientists try to keep calm

NASA scientists are trying to stay calm as the landing of the Curiosity rover approaches. So far, weather conditions on Mars look good for the touchdown.

The Mars rock that inspired a generation of exploration

The Curiosity rover is set to land this Sunday. It hopes to answer some of the questions posed by a mysterious meteorite from Mars that was discovered here on Earth.

Let's talk about Mars: Friday, Aug. 3 @ 12 p.m. PDT

Join KPCC's Sanden Totten and G. Scott Hubbard, a veteran of the NASA Mars program, for a lively chat about all things Mars!

Mars 101: What we know of our celestial neighbor

This Sunday the Curiosity rover is scheduled to touch down on Mars. It's the latest in a very long string of attempts to better understand our rust colored neighbor.

A short history of Mars... in rhyming verse

After centuries of watching Mars in the sky, humans have only just begun to understand the red planet. KPCC's Sanden Totten recaps what we know about it so far.

NASA gets ready for Mars rover landing

On Sunday, NASA's latest rover touches down on Mars. The machine — nicknamed "Curiosity" — will use a super-sonic parachute, heat shields and a hovercraft to stick the landing.

When it comes to weight, 'you are what you eat'

There's a new study on obesity that caught our eye this morning. It makes the bold claim that modern day hunter hatherers in East Africa burn as many calories a day as sedentary office workers here in America. The study compared populations and found that both groups tend to use the same amount of energy, suggesting that America's obesity has more to do with what we eat — not how much we sit.

A day in the life of a chicken sitter

If you are headed out of town this weekend, you might have to call up the dog or the cat sitter. But what if you keep chickens in your backyard?

Lawsuit between origami enthusiasts unfolds

KPCC's Sanden Totten examines the unfolding drama between origami maker Robert Lang and painter Sarah Morris.

E3 underway in LA amid turbulent times in the video game industry

The giant annual video game conference, E3 or Electronic Entertainment Expo, is underway at the Los Angeles Convention Center. KPCC's Sanden Totten brings us more about E3 and the gaming business.

Four tons of marijuana found off Orange County coast

Yesterday, four tons of marijuana were found bobbing in the waters off the coast of Orange County.

What California's 'minority majority' population can teach the nation

The Census reports that for the first time, white births were outnumbered by minority births. This has been true in California for decades. What can the nation learn from California's diverse demographic?

Visiting the first Spacecraft Technology Expo

When there's a group of space enthusiasts at a convention center, they're usually focused on Star Trek or X-Files. But this week, the Los Angeles Convention Center hosted a different crowd of starry-eyed dreamers — space entrepreneurs — for the first-ever Spacecraft Technology Expo.

The physicist behind the hit game Angry Birds

Meet Erin Catto. He lives in Irvine. He’s a father of two, a video game fan and a Cornell graduate who holds a PhD in theoretical and applied mechanics. He is also responsible for the physics of one of the popular mobile games in history.