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

LADWP flips the switch on 52,000 'smart meters'

On July 1st the LADWP began using smart meters on homes and buildings to monitor Angelenos energy use in real time as part of a two year pilot program.

NASA to launch new carbon-tracking spacecraft

The Orbiting Carbon Observatory will use a spectrometer to see which regions of Earth produce the largest amounts of CO2 and which forests reabsorb it the most.

Curiosity completes one Martian year, ends primary mission

The six-wheeled rover completed its primary mission of determining if Mars was ever habitable. Now, the robotic vehicle is on a very long Martian road trip.

Drought: Getty drains ponds, fountains to save water

Fountains and reflecting pools at the Getty's two campuses were drained this week in response to the worsening drought conditions in California.

'Trenching' can make or break quake zone development

But the practice of digging deep holes to pinpoint evidence of past quakes isn't always conclusive.

World Cup: How physics lets players 'bend it like Beckham'

Gustav Magnus was never a soccer star, but the 19th century physicist helped explain the phenomenon that allows players to curve a ball when they kick it.

Why does 'June Gloom' typically come only this time of year?

The morning cloud cover is a regular part of life in Southern California but the phenomenon is caused by some rather unique atmospheric circumstances.

Earthquake safety: LA orders inventory of vulnerable buildings (Updated)

The Los Angeles City Council passed a motion to create three new jobs dedicated to cataloguing the more than 29,000 buildings that may be vulnerable to damage.

Santa Monica to vote on next step of quake retrofitting plan

The City Council will decide on whether or not to hire an engineering firm to help identify seismically vulnerable buildings.

Memorial Day in LA brings out supporters of all stripes

The "Walk for Warriors" 5K in West LA attracted current military personnel and companies that are looking to hire veterans.

LA talent on display at White House Science Fair

On Tuesday President Obama will meet some of America’s brightest minds, including a teen from Los Angeles who who co-created a bracelet that helps autistic children.

Photos of the 10 oddest new species of 2014: Vote for your favorite

Of the more than 18,000 new species identified last year, we've got the 10 most fascinating. After you view them, pick your choice for the weirdest.

Why Jupiter's Great Red Spot is shrinking

A mega-storm on Jupiter that has raged for centuries and is now shrinking at a rapid pace, according to new research from NASA. But why?

Tiny 'vampire' wasps take on invasive citrus psyllid

To help curb an invasive bug threatening California's oranges, scientists are turning to its mortal enemy: a tiny wasp from Pakistan.

Why is the California Poppy the state flower? (Q&A)

California's state flower is a remarkable plant able to thrive in harsh desert environments. This weekend there are plenty of places to see the poppies in bloom.