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

This VR demo shows how sea level rise could impact Santa Monica

Visitors to the Santa Monica Pier will be able to see how climate change is likely to impact the coast thanks to a new virtual reality demonstration.

Is Monday's supermoon worth the super-hype?

Monday's full moon will be closer to Earth than any time in 69 years. It will be slightly bigger and brighter in the night sky.

Prop 64: Pot tax to pay for scientific research

Taxes from the sale of recreational marijuana will help fund research into its affects on society and individuals.

Expect more explosive fire conditions with climate change

After years of drought and high temperatures, Southern California is primed for big, hot fires. Researchers think that climate change may make this the new normal.

Firefighters look for new technology as threat of fire grows

As climate change kicks in, fire threat is expected to grow in California. Firefighters are testing new technology to prepare for that future.

Fire-proofing homes in fire-prone areas

There are 6 million Southern Californians living in areas that are at high risk for wildfire. What can be done to protect their homes?

Weakening La Niña forecast may mean closer to normal SoCal rain this winter

The La Niña climate forecast typically brings drier than average conditions to Southern California. A weak event could mean winter rains for parched region.

Juno spacecraft is orbiting Jupiter after risky maneuver

Success! NASA's Juno spacecraft survives intense radiation to slip into orbit around Jupiter. Scientists and engineers celebrate the news.

Forget fireworks, all eyes are on Jupiter this 4th as probe nears

Jupiter's extreme radiation could knock Juno into space, but if it reaches orbit successfully, the probe can help unlock secrets about the gas giant's origins.

Caltech: San Andreas fault packing bigger punch?

New research looks at why portions of the San Andreas fault have been so silent. One theory suggests that the energy building up in the fault could go beyond traditional quake models.

How to stay safe as shark populations bounce back

Thanks to decades of conservation, shark populations are on the rise, which means they are running into humans more often. Here are some tips for avoiding them.

See Mars at its closest pass to Earth in 11 years

Mars will be bigger and brighter in the sky this Monday than anytime in the last decade. Here's where to look for it.

California's amphibians threatened by climate change and more

Frogs, toads, salamanders and more are dying due to a variety of factors, including urbanization, disease, climate change and pesticides, according to a new study.

Making wine from a piece of LA's early history

Local winemakers are cultivating grapes from an historic vine growing in the heart of downtown L.A.'s Olvera Street market.

LA's 'May Gray' is a little unusual this year, here's why

Clouds in the LA region are sticking around in some unusual places this May thanks to weather pattern known as "reverse clearing."