Rosalind Franklin was selected for her contributions to our understanding of the molecular structure of DNA.
Franklin, a chemist, used a technique called X-ray crystallography to map the location of atoms in crystals.
"There were many very colourful entries - Rover McRoverface I think at one point was one of the most popular names, but of course I think Rosalind Franklin is a much more fitting tribute to a great British scientist", Maj Peake added.
The British built rover that will roam over the surface of Mars in 2021 has been named after the female scientist who co-discovered the structure of DNA.
In addition to the core sampler, the Rosalind Franklin carries the Water Ice and Subsurface Deposit Information on Mars (WISDOM), Infrared Spectrometer for ExoMars (ISEM), Mars Multispectral Imager for Subsurface Studies (Ma-Miss), the Close-Up Imager (CLUPI), and the Pasteur Instrument Suite. Once on the surface of the Red Planet, the Rosalind Franklin rover will be tasked with searching for the building blocks of life.
Alice Bunn, global director at the UK Space Agency, said: "Rosalind Franklin is one of science's most influential women, and her part in the discovery of the structure of DNA was truly ground-breaking".
"The European Space Agency is a real asset to the work - the United Kingdom is a proud founding member and will remain committed into the future", he said.
Colin Paynter, Managing Director Airbus Defence and Space UK said: "Integration of the ExoMars rover, or rather Rosalind, has started here in Stevenage and the teams are now working round the clock in the sterile cleanroom to make sure she will be ready to fly next year".
The rover is under development in the UK.
The first part of the mission was launched in 2016, with the arrival of the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO), which sets out to "sniff" the Martian atmosphere and look for evidence of methane, which may be an indication of active life on or below the planet's surface. She died in 1958 at age 37, and her work went mostly unacknowledged until the 1990s.
James Watson and Francis Crick used her research without permission and with little credit when publishing their model of the structure of DNA in 1953. Nobel Prizes can not be awarded posthumously, but it's unclear if Franklin would have been given credit at the time, anyway.