Sanden Totten

Host, Brains On

Contact Sanden Totten

Sanden Totten is a host and co-producer of American Public Media's Brains On!, a podcast for kids and curious adults about the scientific mysteries of the universe. Prior to that he was KPCC's Science Reporter, where he covered everything from space exploration and medical technology to endangered species and the latest earthquake research.

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

State map shows active fault under Millennium Hollywood site

A new California state map projects an active earthquake fault in the southwestern corner of a Hollywood property where developers hope to build a pair of skyscrapers.

Ticket holders still ready to ride with Virgin Galactic

According to the company, less than 3% of the more than 700 ticket holders have asked for a refund.

Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo crash leaves 1 dead, 1 injured

One person was killed and one injured when Virgin Galactic's experimental space tourism craft SpaceShipTwo crashed in the desert Friday.

Radioactive material detected in LA, Long Beach harbors

Scientists found "pervasive" amounts of Iodine-131 in the waters off the ports. They cite a nearby water reclamation plant as the likely source.

2 JPL experiments lost in Antares explosion

A vapor tracking satellite and an experiment to see how water changes in zero gravity were among the cargo lost when the Antares rocket exploded Tuesday.

Unmanned space station rocket Antares explodes at liftoff

A commercial supply ship bound for the International Space Station has exploded moments after liftoff. The unmanned rocket blew up just six seconds after liftoff.

Smelly fly traps offer hope for California citrus growers

New research has discovered smells that are extremely effective at luring an invasive pest that is threatening California's oranges, lemons and limes.

Earthquake warning alerts on your phone?

The USGS wants to develop an earthquake early warning system but delivering alerts to potentially millions of phones poses a challenge.

Ever wonder just how a solar eclipse can fry your eyes?

Even though the sun is partially obscured during an eclipse, it still gives off enough light to cause a chemical reaction in the eye that damages vision cells.

Partial solar eclipse: How and where to watch Thursday

Southern California will have some of the better viewing as the sun will be down in the east by the time the eclipse happens Thursday. See when and how to watch the eclipse safely.

Increased cosmic radiation could hamper manned Mars missions

A new study found that the sun has been weaker than usual lately, allowing more harmful cosmic radiation to penetrate our solar system's protective bubble.

USC researchers map when the Internet sleeps

They tracked Internet usage across the globe to find out where and when the world uses the web.

Earthquakes: LA on track to have list of 'soft-story' buildings by 2015

So far 2,000 seismically vulnerable structures have been identified in parts of the San Fernando Valley, according to Building and Safety officials.

UCSB researchers find way to 'de-blur' deep space images

The scientists have found a way to offset blurring caused by interstellar plasma. This means scientists could one day get clearer pictures of black holes.

NASA: There may be fewer black holes than previously thought

Some objects scientists once thought were black holes may actually be super-dense, high-energy neutron stars, say NASA researchers.