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

West Coast lawmakers seek funding for quake alert

The move comes days after a magnitude-5.1 quake rattled the greater Los Angeles region near La Habra, causing scattered damage, but no serious injuries.

Researchers to study tsunamis triggered by marine slides

A national team of scientists will be taking a closer look at a rare but potentially dangerous type of tsunami caused by landslides underwater.

La Habra quake: How aftershocks help geologists map new fault

Seismologists are plotting the aftershocks of Friday's 5.1 magnitude earthquake to identify the fault responsible under La Habra.

How neuroscience is improving UC Riverside baseball

Players are training with a scientifically designed brain-game. It's improving their vision and helping them win games, a new study says.

Newly hatched bald eagles are a sign of recovery on Catalina

The bald eagle population crashed in the 1970s because of chemical pollution that had worked its way up the food chain and weakened eagle eggs.

How a large tsunami could impact Los Angeles

Key areas of Los Angeles could flood. As part of Tsunami Preparedness Week, researchers are encouraging people to know what areas are at risk.

California's warmest winter on record comes to a close

This was also one of the state's driest winters with average temperatures more than four degrees above normal.

Wistaria Festival: How did Sierra Madre's record-setting vine get so big?

The flowering vine is considered by Guinness to be the world's largest blooming plant. (And why does Sierra Madre spell it with an "a"?)

California faces even more dry days, says new climate study

Researchers at Scripps Institution of Oceanography predicts as many as ten more dry days a year in California by the end of the century.

Video: Ultra-rare 'false killer whales' sighted off CA coast

The dolphin species is rarely seen off the California coast. A large group of them were spotted near Dana Point Wednesday.

Santa Cruz Island's plant restoration a model for others

Santa Cruz Island was once so ravaged by farmers that many native plants were almost extinct. Now, 30 years later, it is a success story others hope to learn from.

5 things you should know about Fukushima and the West Coast

Water containing traces of radioactive material released by the Fukushima nuclear power plant is expected to reach California sometime this year.

Ukraine tensions aren't disrupting NASA-Russia relations

NASA relies on Russia to ferry its astronauts to the International Space Station; says it currently has no contingency plans.

LA's rain will likely reduce fire risk later in the year

Rain in Southern California likely won't cause more fire-prone grass to grow, researchers say. It may even help keep chaparral hydrated during the dry summer months.

LA Rain: Billions of gallons of polluted runoff likely

Storm water runoff fouls beaches and water quality in Santa Monica and San Pedro bays, and it can harm marine life, too.