DARPA is always looking for "The Next Great Thing" for military applications, like robotic cars (not remotely controlled), etc. Interestingly most new military gear comes from private industry inventing new goodies.
EX. The sniping gear that is now being adopted is almost all the result of private initiative, such as Kestrel weather/ballistic meter, Horus reticles, immproved long range cartridges, Barrett .50 cal. rifles, etc. Yes there are some some coming from military solitications, like the recent SOCOM sniper rifle. Usually military solitications wind up being things "designed by a committee" in truth and, unfortunately, in operation. Witness the painful gestation of the Bradley Fighting Vehicle. Aaaaarrgghh!
My son-in-law worked with DARPA on some research and was given a DARPA "challenge coin". They wanted him full time but he preferred academe. I think he was very smart in that decision.