Studying the sea–air interaction between the upper ocean and typhoons is crucial to improve our understanding of heat and momentum exchange between the atmosphere and the ocean. There is a strong heat flux exchange between the atmosphere and the ocean during the impact of a typhoon, and the physical fields, such as the wind field, wave field, flow field, and SST field, also interact with each other. A fully coupled Atmosphere–Wave–Ocean model in the South China Sea was established by the mesoscale atmospheric model WRF, wave model SWAN, and the regional ocean model ROMS based on the COAWST model system. Typhoon Kai-tak was simulated using this fully coupled model and some other coupled schemes. In this paper, the variation of sea surface temperature (SST) and ocean subsurface temperature caused by Typhoon Kai-tak is analyzed by the fully coupled model, and the basic characteristics of the response of the upper ocean to the typhoon are given. The simulation results demonstrate that the fully coupled WRF-SWAN-ROMS model shows that the typhoon passes through the sea with obvious cooling. In the cold eddy region, the sea surface temperature cools 4 to 5 °C, and the cooling zone is concentrated on the right side of the track. The change of sea surface temperature lags more than 12 h behind the change of sea surface height. The decrease of SST on the left side of the track was relatively small: ranging from 1.5 to 2.5 °C. The disturbance of typhoon causes the subsurface water to surge to the surface, changes the temperature distribution of the surface, and causes the mixing layer to deepen about 40 m to 60 m. The simulation results reveal the temporal and spatial distribution of sea temperature and mixed layer depth. The sea surface temperature field has an asymmetrical distribution in space and has a lag in time. The heat exchange at the air–sea interface is very strong under the influence of the typhoon. The heat exchange between the air and sea is divided into latent heat and sensible heat, and the latent heat generated by water vapor evaporation plays a dominant role in the heat exchange at the air–sea interface, which shows that the heat carried by the vaporization of the sea surface is one of the important factors for the decrease of sea temperature under the influence of the typhoon.
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