The communication system sounds similar to CAN-BUS
The communication system sounds similar to CAN-BUS - a relatively sane system designed to operate in (signal) noisy environments, originally automotive but now a lot of industrial. Similarly you have only have one active "sender" on the network, devices are communicated with using a time-sliced / QoS communications scheme and much of the communications is uni-directional, including asynchronous, synchronous or watchdog communications. Devices (nodes) can be configured to communicate with each other automatically and nodes can be configured to only publish the very limited interfaces that you want or need to publish. Restricting such communications to very clearly defined, tight interfaces makes the things very hard to hack and this is true of any communications system between devices or systems.
(I spent a few years working with CAN-Open, which is effectively the same as CAN and very similar to many other industrial or signal-noisy control systems.)